Not Like Me Book Review by Glen McGraw

Aug 20

Recently Glen McGraw wrote a really kind and encouraging review of my book, information pills  Not Like Me: A Field Guide for Influencing a Diverse World.

For resources for a sermon series in your church or using Not Like Me in your small group, viagra dosage go to www.NotLikeMe.org.

For the entire review by Glen, story  go here.

For some of what he wrote, see below:

“Recently while working a customer came looking for a particular book titled, Not Like Me, by Eric Michael Bryant. When we did not have it in stock he explained he was coming to purchase copies for others and recommended it to me. He was very passionate about it so I decided to give it a try. I was pleased with taking the time to read the book….

The book is divided into two distinctive parts. The first part addresses the fact that people are more important than issues. Bryant spends four chapters discussing this and each chapter is filled with wonderful and sometimes humorous illustrations. This could be referred to as the people first, opinions second section. Bryant repeatedly shows his love for his neighbors while trying to convince his reader to do the same in these chapters….

The second section is discussing how to love others instead of fighting over everything. Here Bryant teaches his readers how to look past divisive issues. He shows the church how to overlook stereotypes, or more importantly, how to look beyond the stereotype and see the person behind it. He talks about building relationships with those of other faiths and how to deal with others in this sex-crazed world.

…In this book, you find amazing effectiveness when he goes to his neighbors without objective except to develop friendships. You will learn how to approach people with a singular goal – to love them as Christ loved you.

I am glad I bought this book on the recommendation of a perfect stranger. I am recommending every person who reads this will purchase this book and take the time to read it. You can find it on Amazon here….”

Leadership, Innovation, Stand Up Comedy (Staying Connected)

Dec 07

Daily I try to post an article, more about a video, approved a resource, or something of interest on leadership, innovation, ministry, or stand up comedy. If you would like to receive more frequent updates and be the first to hear about giveaways or special events, here are the four best options:

  • Follow me on twitter (@ericbryant)
  • Become my facebook friend (ericmichaelbryant)
  • Sign up for the “Get Blog Updates via Email” at the top right of www.ericbryant.org.
  • Sign up for the monthly newsletter which includes resources, articles, and giveaways, go to the top right of www.ericbryant.org and sign up for the monthly newsletter!

 

7 Principles for Creating Community

Dec 06

Recently I shared some of the principles from Not Like Me at the Thrive Conference.

Here are seven principles for Catalyzing Community whether you are trying to start a small group, malady ministry, a non-profit organization, or a church:

Principle #1: Cause creates community.
Our cause = moving people to become the person God created them to be.

Principle #2: Meet the needs of those around us.
We need to seek to meet the physical, emotional, economic, and spiritual needs of those around us. We should be pursue helping change the environment and change the individual who is looking for change.

Principle #3: Reach out to Xenos
Hospitality means loving strangers. A similar word, “hospice,” means “a safe place.” Our homes, our businesses, and our churches should become safe places for strangers to experience kindness and love.

Principle #4: Develop authentic friendships with those you know.
Are we loving, serving, and influencing our family, neighbors, co-workers and friends?

Jesus was willing to ruin His reputation to reach out to others who were far from God.

Principle #5: Allow people to belong before they believe.
We should never allow our convictions to become a litmus test for friendship. In fact, we should actively pursue friendships with people – even people with whom we may disagree. Go to www.mosaic.org/faq for more on the staff process at Mosaic.

Come as you are, and you don’t have to stay that way! (see www.gatewaychurch.com/podcast)

Principle #6: Raise up a team of leaders to replace you
MPAC = Ministry through a pastor, assimilator, and catalyst
We need to make decisions based on who is not yet here rather than who has been here the longest.

Principle #7: Start Over

**For the rest of the notes, email me at eric.bryant@gatewaychurch.com with “Catalyzing Community” in the subject or you can listen to the conference call at my site’s audio messages at Catalyzing Community – 2nd audio from the bottom. You will also find interviews with Dan Kimball, Erwin McManus, Margaret Feinberg, and many others.

What have you seen bring people together?

www.ericbryant.org

Sep 27

For daily posts on loving, for sale serving, no rx and influencing others, join us at www.ericbryant.org.

 

A Conversation with Mike Breen

Mar 27

Some of the leaders from Gateway Church in Austin met up with Mike Breen and of his leaders from their days in the U.K.. From his bio: Mike was the Senior Rector at St. Thomas Sheffield, look where they pioneered some very different ways of being the church and when they left they were the largest church in England. Today, he leads 3DM, the global home for an organic movement of biblical discipleship and missional church that is centered in the United States.” Mike is the author of the following books:

Here are some of the insights he shared with us:

Two Questions for Disciples:

  1. What is God saying to you?
  2. What are you going to do about it?

A great Western fallacy is that someone can pass from information to innovation without first passing through imitation. Most Westerners have been more influenced by the Enlightenment than the Reformation.

As the message of Jesus moved beyond the Jewish context into the Gentile world, the relationships went from being described as “rabbi and disciple” to “parent and child.” (For example, see 1 Corinthians 4:14-17).

  • Information – The guardian would teach the children reading, writing, and arithmetic (the pedagogical essentials).
  • Imitation – The son spent time with his father to learn the family business. The daughter spent time with her mother to learn how to care for the oikos (family, neighbors, friends).
  • Innovation -Once someone has the basics, they can go to a new town and contextualize their craft.

The Four Human Spaces:

  • Intimate – 2 to 3 people
  • Personal – 6 to 12 people
  • Social -20-70 people
  • Public – 70+

The social space is crucial because it is within the social space that the intimate and personal spaces take place. In the Western world we have lost our extended family and put all of our hopes into the nuclear family which has failed.

Small groups are small enough to care but aren’t big enough to dare.

There is no word for “nuclear family” in Hebrew, Aramaic, or Greek. The word “family” always means extended family.

Jesus spend time with the Father on His own (up), spent time with His disciples (in), and spent time with the crowds (out). At the beginning, Mike encouraged his small groups to get out of the room where they were meeting and walk around the community where they meet and pray for the community (like caroling for mimes). A few people asked them what they were doing and they said: “praying for our community.” Some were impressed by that. The next time they went into the shops and to the homes and asked what they could be praying for. This follows what Jesus did with His disciples in Matthew 10. Once needs were discovered, the small group began to meet those needs in addition to praying for the community.

When asked to describe what he sensed God was calling the worship team to do, the worship pastor at St. Thomas in Sheffield said: “We want to be the welcomers of the unwelcome.”

The network leader needs to be the vision carrier for the mission.

 

“…But Don’t Stay That Way” (video message)

Mar 22

…But Don’t Stay That Way | February 5, more about 201 from Gateway Church on Vimeo.

I spoke at Gateway’s McNeil campus and our new Central series on Feb. 5th. Here are some of the thoughts I shared:

“At Gateway, we use this phrase a lot: ‘Come as you are, but don’t stay that way.

In the Scriptures there is a story in the life of Israel where the world they knew was falling apart. Chaos and destruction had become the norm, but the prophet Ezekiel promised that there was a way out – a path of hope. Ezekiel challenged his people to align their behavior with God’s ways in order to experience restoration and healing.

Here are four insights from the story of Ezekiel that will help us live new lives.

First, we need to listen to the watchmen in your life.

If we are tired of where we are now, are we willing to make different choices? What sacrifices do you need to make to become who were meant to be?

Second, we need to care enough to be a watchman in the lives of others.

A loving community allows people to come as they are and cares enough to help people not stay that way.

Third, the way out of their current situation began with taking personal responsibility.

There comes a time in our lives (and it is sooner than we think), that we need to learn to feed ourselves.

Fourth, trust God. The great news is we are not alone in this. God is here for us.

God promises you a better future with Him than you’ve experienced without Him. The war over your future is not over. You may have lost some battles, but there is hope! You and I can take personal responsibility for our future, and we are not alone. God is here to help us.

Next Steps:

For more notes from this message, go here.

From Information to Incarnation by Tim Hawks

Mar 20

As part of a training with several churches in Austin, website Tim Hawks, the lead pastor at Hill Country Bible Church shared about moving from an informational model to an incarnational model.

Informational Model

The spiritual leader teaches the Bible to the church so the church tries to teach the Bible to the world. As a result, the church comes across as hypocritical and judgmental.

In this model, the Bible can become a barrier to connecting with people.

Incarnational Model

The spiritual leader studies the Scriptures and lives it out so that he or she can pass it along relationally. The message comes across as “if it wasn’t for Jesus, I would still be stuck.” The world sees the church as imperfect people trying to live a new life following the Scriptures.

The Scriptures are supposed to be living within us. This was God’s approach through Jesus.

If we needed to see Jesus in order to know and follow God, it makes sense that others would need to see Jesus in us.