ADVOCATE Phoenix …… Spiritual Solutions Group (SSG) ...... As Pastor Mark Sees It…..
What if we did not have to “fit into a mold” to develop our spiritual life? We got that!! Wouldn’t it be better if we could develop our spiritual life based on our life experiences and our relationships? Instead of sitting and being talked at, how about we have conversations and discuss as a group seeking to learn more, no matter where we are at in our spiritual walk? Through Works Fellowship’s Spiritual Solutions Group (SSG) is open to all adult men and women and meets Thursdays at 6:30PM at Living Word Ahwatukee. It’s the community you need for the change you seek. or email me and let’s chat! PastorMarksMail@gmail.com
I have had the great opportunity to experience many churches here in the Phoenix area over the past 11 plus years. I have also been blessed to make many acquaintances, establish contacts, and build friendships with people from all walks of faith!
One of the many things I have learned over many years is that while some folks need and want the traditional church with the Pastor in the pulpit on Sundays backed by choirs, services and ministries, they, like the others, are still seeking that 1 to 1 connection! Our statistics are showing a significant decrease in Sunday church attendance.
As I trained to be a Pastor, I continued to observe this need. I gave it to the Lord so He could show me where He wants me to serve as well as what His solution is. As I connected with folks I started to see a pattern emerge. “Yes we love our church,… yes we look forward to the Sunday message, … we try to participate in church events and outreach events when we can, BUT”… and there it was! That “big ol BUT!”
What follows the “BUT” is this…”BUT we like serving at the local shelter”…. “BUT I like to help families in need right here in my neighborhood”…. “BUT I like taking a meal and visiting with the folks at the shelter/ rehab /retirement home/ Veterans facility”…. and finally…”BUT I HAVE MY OWN IDEAS ON HOW TO HELP OTHERS and no one seems to want to listen or take it on.”
What would it be like for you to have someone devoted to your growth and influence? What if you had a person who prayed for you often, genuinely befriended you, and coached and mentored you in what God was doing in your life? What if you were the priority, even as you are trying to serve others as a priority?
I have started many successful groups and projects over the years. It is part of my gifting and my DNA. I enjoy teaching, training, encouraging, and empowering people to chase their serving ideas and dreams using their passion combined with my support.
My good friend and brother in Christ, Mark Robertson has started several successful groups with me and knows me well. He introduced me to his longtime friend since childhood, Joe Woodruff and his ADVOCATE strategy.
The way I see it and what the Lord has laid on my heart is that we need to become the Uber version of church. We don’t need a building with a mortgage, a staff, an overhead, or a weekly Sunday Sermon. As Joe taught me, we “don’t need to make people fit in our box!” Advocate is a fluid strategy of ministry that helps a community be as responsive as possible rather than as predictive as possible - we serve as the Spirit leads more than what a pre-determined strategy dictates.
Through ADVOCATE we can work with people 1 on 1 helping them grow their relationship with Jesus, answer their questions, help them realize their service gifting’s, and connect with a community of folks who share their passions to build a network that helps others! We don’t have to wait until Sunday to do this! We can do this daily, in our regular lives with the folks we see every day!
Please connect with me and let’s talk! I would love to hear your heart on this idea and see what Advocate looks like for you!
Pastor Mark PastorMarksMail@gmail.com