Helium, Holy Spirit, and Expanding God's Kingdom
The word ‘expansion’ often brings to mind the action of going forth or getting bigger than one’s current state. The other day, I asked my seven-year-old cousin to define the word ‘expand’, and simply enough he pointed to a party balloon and my noticeably expanding stomach, which in my defense was caused by the aftermath of a birthday party feast. I concluded that the action of expansion requires an internal force, via helium in a balloon or the countless pieces of KFC in my belly.
In Steve Long’s introduction of this year’s theme for Catch The Fire Toronto, Expanding Your Kingdom By Pursuing Your Presence, he concluded that “if the members of our church seek the Lord as individuals, we as a church will see His Kingdom expanded!”
"We have been challenged to disciple each other"
Though my cousin may be young, his simple revelation aligned with the church’s goal of expanding God’s Kingdom. The internal forces in a church are the members guided by the Holy Spirit. As the young seem to possess a quirky ability to enlighten, I decided to look toward the youth of my campus in Brampton for more revelation on expansion. I asked youth member Mark Baqurin how he is applying this year’s theme of ‘Expanding Your Kingdom by Pursuing Your Presence’. At first, I expected a personal reply on whether or not he was joining in with ten minute worship, or praying and reading the Bible more often in order to seek a better relationship with God. Instead he replied with this:
“The Brampton Campus has been reaching out to its youth. After being without a youth pastor for a while, the youth were starting to disappear. Now we have been challenged to disciple each other, share what we have been learning at the Brampton Campus and seek answers to more difficult questions from leaders…”
"We continue to be part of this expansion movement throughout the world."
His description reminded me of the great expansion of God’s Kingdom after Christ ascended into heaven. Although the physical representation of Christ was no longer with the believers, they were able to disciple each other with the guidance of the Holy Spirit. And we continue to be part of this expansion movement throughout the world.
So how do we pursue God’s presence through discipleship? As Mark put it, we must share what we’ve learned and ask our leaders questions so that we may have clarity in God’s messages. Let’s continue the undying expansion started by the first disciples of Jesus.
As Proverbs 27:17 states “As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another.” But be careful who you ask questions to, you might find yourself running on a treadmill after being criticized by a seven year old boy.