Sunday, January 23, 2011

Os Guiness on evangelism and discipleship in the global era

A few quotes from Os Guinness, when he and David Wells addressed the Lausanne Congress 2010 on globalisation.

...The rarest commodity in the West is attention… because in the West everybody’s speaking, e.mailing, texting, tweeting, blogging, you name it. Everybody’s speaking. Nobody’s listening. And we think with better technologies we’ll get over to them. It’s not a technological problem, it’s a spiritual, moral problem. And if ever we needed the power of the Holy Spirit to say things simple and fresh that break through this barrier it’s today.

...Let me finish with a series of very simple points to ponder. Evangelism and discipleship in the global era.

First, evangelism in some ways is easier, but genuine discipleship is harder.

Secondly, social justice has become very popular but evangelism is politically incorrect.

Methodologies have run riot and are valued by everybody, but truth has become unfashionable and embarrassing.

The internet of course is fast and powerful but it’s shallow; incarnate witness is slow and costly but it’s deep.

The global and the short term are very glamorous; the local and the long-term are costly and sacrificial.

Virtual community and virtual communications are prized but they are never more than what’s called thin. Face-to-face community and face-to-face communication is discounted but of course that’s what reflects our Lord in the incarnation. 

You can catch the video here