I am not a Bible scholar. There are many scripture passages that I have a vague recollection of, but I can't remember where they are. I can picture them in my mind, but when I search for them, I can't find them. For instance, I was looking for a passage from one of Paul's letters where he admonishes his church to do what he does. I've searched in BibleGateway.com using various forms of "Watch me. Do what I do" in various translations. But I've come up empty. I know it's there somewhere! I remember hearing Curry Blake preach about it. He said Paul was training people up to walk in the Spirit... to heal the sick and raise people from the dead, just as Jesus taught his disciples. He told them that the best way to do it is to imitate what he did.
This is the best way to learn! It goes beyond listening to lectures and taking notes. It's called "practicing." Some might even call it "fake it til you make it." Emulate. Reverse-engineer. It requires that you to step out of your comfort zone and "do" something.
Not everyone is bold. Some of us sit on the sidelines hoping we'll muster up some courage or attain enough knowledge to go out into the world and make disciples. We listen to good preachers, we take notes, we pray for boldness, and we hope we'll learn by osmosis. But that's not how a baby learns to walk, and it's not how Jesus wants us to learn. He says "Follow me..." as in "Get up! Walk! Take your first step!"
And there's another passage or two in scripture where Paul encourages the church to encourage one another... to lift one another up. That's what living in community entails: learning from one another, encouraging one another, and walking through life together. We are a body, and Christ is our head—A beautiful, complex organism that accomplishes things the hand or foot alone could never accomplish.
That's why whenever I'm asked to do something I've never done before, I find out what others have done and try to learn from their victories and failures. And that's where we are right now in OSL There are folks out there who have learned how to reach people through virtual conferences and services, and the rest of us are learning from them.
I encourage you to partake in these online events whenever possible, and in doing so, look for ways that you can expand your own ministry to reach more people with the saving, healing, love of Christ.
"Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it.
Learn the unforced rhythms of grace."
Matthew 11:29 The Message