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Focus on Relationships

Live, Work & Play Ministries places the focus, for sharing our faith, on building relationships with the people around us (i.e. in our neighborhoods, public schools, in the work place, and where we go to play and have fun) through acts of love, hospitality, and service.

 

When our focus is on people rather than on “our message for those people,” God will reveal to us when is the right time and situation for us to verbally share the hope of Christ with them. Until that time comes, our goal is to help people experience the love and hope of Christ, through us, in the ways that we relate to and accept them. Rick Warren said, “Missional living is easy. Just be nice to people.”


Importance of Prayer

As we care about and invest ourselves in relationships with other people, it’s important to remember that we don’t change hearts, God does. Therefore, our fervent prayers, for those we’re building relationships with, are as (or more) vital than our acts of love, hospitality, and service. It’s a good reminder for me, because prayer is often the part of the equation that I’m most tempted to neglect. God uses us as relational bridge builders to help soften hearts that give rise to the hope of a transformational work that is only possible through the power of the Holy Spirit.


Relationships Take Time

It’s also important to remember that relationships take time to develop. When my wife, Laura, and I moved into our neighborhood, 5 years ago, we were so committed to building trusting relationships with our neighbors that we decided to not initiate any conversations about spiritual things (though we’d be happy to respond, if asked), and not to invite anyone to church before, at least, inviting them into our home. That was a difficult year! There were plenty of situations where we felt like maybe we should have said something spiritual or invited someone to something great that was being offered in church, but we successfully resisted!

As it has turned out, God enabled us to, not only build relationships, but to establish genuine friendships with a lot of our neighbors (many of whom are non-Christians). After about 2-3 years of investing in our neighbors’ lives, we noticed that spiritual conversations began to happen naturally, and shockingly to us, neighbors started asking us if they could come to church with us!

Since then, God has used us to start a neighborhood Men’s Group, a stay-at-home Mom’s Group, a softball team, bonfires with the guys, and several families have started coming to church and have even become members (at Perimeter or other local churches). Though we’d love for our neighbors to come to Perimeter, that’s not our top priority. Our greatest priority is that our neighbors would enter into a love relationship with Jesus Christ and that their lives, families, and our community would experience transformation and then to help connect them into a local church (whether it be Perimeter or another gospel centered church).


Freedom from Guilt

Our hope is that Live, Work & Play Ministries will be able to help free up Christians from the guilt and frustration we often experience when it comes to our inability to effectively share our faith, and to encourage us to be able to be ourselves while being intentional about building relationships with non-Christians. It’s ok for us to be around them in the midst of their bad habits, and it’s also ok for them to see ours. Neil Cole said, “If you want to win the world to Christ, you’re going to have to sit in the smoking section.”


Holistic Ministry Focus

Live, Work & Play Ministries also focuses not only on people, but also on places. Recalling a conversation Bob Cargo referred to in one of his sermons, Bob asked a church planter, “What is your vision for ministry?” The church planter responded by saying, “The vision of our ministry is pursuing the restoration of ‘nouns’ (i.e. persons, places, and things).” That’s a great summary! Live, Work & Play Ministry is about seeing the gospel delivered in a holistic manner for the transformation of people, places, and things. We want to see people’s lives transformed, but we also want to see neighborhoods, schools, workplaces, culture, and cities transformed.


The Big Picture

For a glimpse of “the big picture” for Live, Work & Play Ministries, Perimeter is focusing specifically on making a Kingdom difference in the geographic region surrounding Perimeter Church, at a grassroots level, which includes our neighborhoods (i.e. subdivisions, apartment complexes, condos, etc.), the 9 public school clusters (including Centennial, Chattahoochee, Duluth, Johns Creek, North Gwinnett, Norcross, Northview, Peachtree Ridge, and South Forsyth), and the 8 Channels of Cultural Influence (i.e. Arts and Entertainment, Business, Education, Government, Healthcare, Law / Judicial, Media, and Non-Profits). In addition to pursuing the hearts of people, we want to see each of these “places” begin to reflect Kingdom values.


Vision Summarized

If I had to summarize Perimeter Church’s vision statement in one word, the word I’d use would be “Transformation.” While Perimeter is passionate about pursuing transformation of cities and nations, transformation really begins where we live, work and play. Transformation of big places begins with the transformation of small places, and the transformation of individual hearts lends itself to the transformation of entire cities and nations.  When we engage ourselves in personal ministry where we live, work and play, it makes a difference... in a BIG way!


Personal Assistance

Our staff is here to help you by walking alongside and providing resources, equipping, and encouragement. We’d love to have a conversation on the phone or meet with you over a cup of coffee or lunch to help you get a clearer picture of how God might use you in your own unique context of where you Live, Work & Play.