19 Oct Kingdom Reality
The movement Jesus started 2,000 years ago is long gone, but it does not have to be. I was given a great gift recently by taking part in the FCA Eurasia conference in Kyiv, Ukraine. I honestly had no idea what to expect, but that can be when some of the best experiences happen.
Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA) International works around the world funding, assisting, and equipping local leaders to coordinate and manage FCA programs. They do not provide everything that is needed, but they do a great deal to connect people to Jesus through sports. As I reminded the attendees of the two conferences we helped lead: We are not responsible for people committing to follow Jesus, we just set up the date. If we can use sports to do that, we should.
I was overwhelmed, which is not a strong enough word, with how FCA Eurasia reminded me of the Early Church in Scripture—2,000 years removed, but very much present today. These leaders, coaches, and athletes have such a yearning for Jesus that it left me wanting more of our time together. I taught about discipleship and leadership, but they spoke to my heart as well.
The FCA Eurasia conferences were composed of participants from Ukraine, Moldova, Kazakstan, Azerbaijan, Kyrgyzstan, Belarus, and Russia. They are connected…in that…they are one organism that is not divided by borders or politics. They are working together for the Kingdom of God, and they are doing a phenomenal job! FCA International agrees, and they even shared that the Eurasian team is one of, if not, the best programs in their operation.
I do not want to romanticize the Jesus followers we see in Acts 2—they met together daily, shared their resources, cared for the people, and the Church grew. I know the world has changed, but the Gospel has not. People entered into a relationship with Jesus, and they lived for Him and His purposes. This Kingdom reality is what I saw over the last 10 days. There is no hidden formula. We only need to commit to relying on the Holy Spirit, and amazing things will happen.
I learned a great deal from the other leaders on our team and the FCA Eurasia participants, which I will be unpacking long after I unpack my luggage and try to get back to normalcy. My struggle will be whether I should get back to normal at all. Seeing a glimpse of the Early Church today definitely got my attention. I want more of that Kingdom reality in my life, and I hope you do, too. This Sunday, we start a series about the Sacred Enneagram and how we can do a better job being us. Get to church on Sunday as we celebrate the Kingdom come!
Blessings to you,