Burning Brightly in Community

Dear friends,

A burning log, if isolated, will fizzle.

Recently my wife and I went on a holiday to the Snowy Mountains, south of Sydney. Beautiful autumn weather allowed us to walk around lakes and climb to the summit of Mount Kosciuszko. The nights were cold, and we enjoyed the warmth and ambience of a fireplace. Watching the flickering and dancing flames was hypnotising. Occasionally, a brightly burning log might roll away from the other wood. When all the logs were burning together, they produced heat and light. No matter how big or bright, if a log became out of touch with the others, it would cool and eventually fizzle out.

At the summit of Mount Kosciuszko 

How is your spiritual fire?

If you are a follower of Jesus, can you remember a time when you were more intense and vibrant in following Him?

If God or Jesus seems distant now, could it be that you have ‘rolled’ away or drifted from Jesus and His community?

When worldly success looked more tangible and attractive than Jesus, perhaps we allowed ourselves to be influenced by the marketing hype. Perhaps we surrounded ourselves with promoters of worldly success more than team Jesus.

I’m not suggesting we remain in a holy huddle and only interact with Christians. Instead, I’m emphasising that we must function in a community of Jesus’ followers to redefine success according to Jesus. The predominant culture of self-absorption, comparison, competition and materialism is so enticing and powerful that we cannot resist it alone. In my book, I devoted an entire chapter on ‘Redefining Success in Community’ and quoted Brooke Turner, a consultant and author:

Addicted to our smartphones, alienated by materialism, cynical about politics and disconnected from the wider community: modern life has made many of us feel more isolated than is healthy. Then the world went into lockdown–and the age of loneliness turned chronic. Loneliness is an unintended consequence of affluence. (page 202)

Satan is delighted when we succumb to extreme individualism. He loves it when we delude ourselves with self-sufficiency, especially when we think we can be independent of God. The Apostle Peter describes Satan as prowling around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour (1 Peter 5:8 NIV). A lion pounces on the animal that is isolated. Listen to African wisdom, “If you want to go fast, go alone; if you want to go far, go together.”

As we recognise the challenge to redefine success according to Jesus, let’s also celebrate that we don’t have to go alone. Perhaps you want to:

  • Invite others to read and apply the book with you.
  • Ask your Bible study group to read the book and use the group discussion questions to dig deeper and apply.
  • Join me and others for the online 7-week Redefining Success according to Jesus Challenge

Every Thursday from 27th May to 8th July

7.30 to 8.45 PM Sydney – AEST

The emphasis will be on inspiration, application, support and accountability as we cover how to:

  • Identify the definitions of success that are harming you and your family, and your blind spots
  • Connect more deeply with the real Jesus
  • Place your security and identity in ‘Being God’s Children’
  • Be Kingdom-focused in more aspects of your life
  • Give generously as a channel instead of the source
  • Be motivated by love instead of guilt, shame or fear
  • Practice being in a community more than individualism.      

What you need to invest:

  • A heart open to the real Jesus to inspire, convict, change and empower us
  • Attend weekly meetings or watch the replay if you miss the live session
  • Schedule time each week to read the relevant sections of the book, reflect and journal. It is up to you to schedule short daily sessions, fewer but longer sessions, etc. We suggest a minimum of 3 hours per week because life transformation is not a quick fix.    
  • Have a 20-minute conversation on your application with at least one other person.

To be transparent, this will be the first time we are offering the course. We have worked hard to develop quality content and are excited to share it with you.

You can watch alone – first cohort discount down from AU $99 to AU $59* per person.

If you sign up as a group who will watch, discuss and pray together in person – first cohort discount down from AU $249 to AU $150* per group, irrespective of the number of people.

A bargain for inspirational, challenging and counter-culture discipleship that has the potential to transform your life and ripple to bless people around you. 100% money-back guarantee**

You will receive a PDF of the book and notes.

Come on your own, bring a friend or come as a group.

More info on redefiningsuccess.com.au/events

Let’s redefine success according to Jesus in community,

Omar

*We appreciate that the pandemic and other challenges have caused financial distress for some people. Email info@redefiningsuccess.com.au to apply for a scholarship from Redefining Success Ministry. We don’t want anyone to miss out!
**100% money-back guarantee – If you have invested 3 hours per week in reading, reflection, prayer and application; attended a minimum of 4 sessions; and as an individual or half of your group are not satisfied with their progress, we will refund your payment in full.

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