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6 Outreach Lessons From Johnny Appleseed

by | Aug 12, 2020 | Church Revitalization, Outreach and Evangelism, Servant Evangelism, Small Church / Rural Church

John Chapman, aka the legendary “Johnny Appleseed”, was a missionary who reached out to Native Americans in the Ohio Valley in the early 1800s.

He Had Simple Tools

His primary planting tool was a stick! Do you have a stick? When his current stick wore out he found a new stick. I heard recently through the grapevine that sticks are still easy to find!

The more elaborate we make our plans the more likely it is that we will fail.

He Heard the Invitation

He picked up on the invitation of the Father to accomplish his lifelong mission, therefore when the going got tough he was able to return to the beginning of it all to when God unmistakably spoke to him to go out in the first place.

He Didn’t Talk About Outreach, He Did Outreach

Johnny understood it’s about activism, not mere talk, nor continual preparation study, nor the accruing of more cool conference notebooks. He was all about taking risks and getting out there. If he were alive in 2012 his motto would be, “Missional schmissional! Stop the incessant talk, stop being a chicken, and just do it for Pete’s sake!”

He Did Small Things

It doesn’t take much to change the world. A tiny apple seed grows into the largest fruit-bearing tree in the plant world that will bear thousands of apples.

He Was Faithful

He was all in! He burned his bridges. There was no return.

He Saw Potential in the Faith Realm

Some would find it difficult, if not impossible, to do the ministry of Johnny because it was long-term and not immediately fulfilling. He was called by God to do something great but something that not would fully bear fruit in his lifetime.
Each seed was destined to produce an amazing tree that would produce thousands of apples to the glory of God. It takes the kind of faith that only God can provide to live from that perspective. We can’t work that up. “God empower us the ability to hear your calling, regardless of the timing.”
With servant evangelism ministry the fruit takes a while to come about but guaranteed, but when a church remains faithful to strongly serve and show generosity to their surrounding community, astounding results will come about.

Anyone can count the number of seeds in an apple, but only God can count the number of apples in a seed.

Dr. Robert H. Schuller

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Steve Sjogren

Steve Sjogren has been a part of successfully planting five churches across America and Europe and has successfully deployed eighteen churches. Additionally, Steve has coached dozens of church planters from a broad base of faith groups. His church planting book, Community of Kindness has encouraged and influenced thousands of church plants. He currently coaches planters at various stages in their development. You can reach Steve here. Read More About Steve Sjogren At His Author Page  

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