DMM counter-intuitives—“Expect the hardest places to yield the greatest results.” When Jesus is about to go to a place he prepares it (Luke 10).
There are places where people doubt the gospel can be taken. The people group there seems totally resistant to Jesus’ followers. But we have found that often they are actually resistant to cultural Christianity. When kingdom values are modeled by believers who truly honor the community and seek out persons of peace, God often gives an abundant harvest. I doubt anyone expected a move of God to break out in the Philippian jail.
When believers seek the heart of God regarding entering a new community, they desire to connect with people God has already been preparing. He opened the door for me to enter into the Rutherford County Jail. I never would have expected convicted felons to be the likely candidates for me to disciple more than twenty individuals. But it is an awesome testimony when transformation happens in the least likely places.
Who would have expected Saul of Tarsus would be chosen as the apostle to the Gentiles? Who could have anticipated Galilean fishermen would be selected to turn the world upside down? When hard places yield great results God gets the glory!
We have seen Muslim sheiks and imams become powerful church planters. We know former terrorists who now make disciples. This counter-intuitive reminds us that Disciple Making Movements (DMM) always bear witness to God’s ways not being our ways. But the more we are aware of his capacity to do the unexpected, the greater our capacity to anticipate that a former closed city, region or nation is exactly where he wants to bring the gospel.
List the places where you would last expect a DMM to grow and then ask God to open a way. Pay special attention when a new disciple shares a passion for a hard place. Remember that Scriptures delight in “the Impossibility Specialist” nature of our Creator.
Who do you see as the least likely? Government officials, Wall Street investors, drug-pushing gangs, sex-traffickers?
Do not forget the transformational power of God. Remember what Paul wrote about the Corinthians: “Or do you not know that wrongdoers will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor men who have sex with men nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God” (1 Corinthians 6:9-11).
We come to expect the hardest places to yield the greatest results because God is in the redemption business. He gathers fame to his name when the impossible happens, yet again!