#VergeChi :: Dhati Lewis – Live With Jesus & With People

dhati lewis

Dhati is the Lead Pastor at Blueprint Church in Atlanta, GA. Dhati, born and raised in California, moved to Texas for his undergraduate studies at the University of North Texas and his graduate studies at Dallas Theological Seminary (Master of Arts in Cross Cultural Ministries). While in Texas, Dhati served on staff at Denton Bible Church for 7 years. He started Plumbline, a very successful college ministry on UNT and TWU campuses. He served as the college pastor there and eventually planted a church, which he pastored for 3 years. During that time, he also served as chaplain to UNT’s football team and coached high school football (sports have always been a big passion for Dhati and a large part of how he came to the Lord).

Live With Jesus and With People

  • We’re a church in Atlanta. We’re reaching the re-gentrified people in an urban context.
  • My definition of urban is density and diversity. Where we see all of the worlds coming together. Redistribution of the poor.
  • Our neighborhoods no longer look like one type of person. They are multicultural.
  • How do we make disciples in the urban context?
  • How do we multiply urban leaders with the gospel?
  • Paul moved into a city and planted the gospel into people’s hearts and the tangible result is that churches are formed.
  • How do we recapture and rebuild disciple making in the local church?
  • This has been robbed by para-church ministries.
  • Early on I was a functioning unitarian. I wanted to take the best of each religion.
  • At the end of the day I became a Christian because it was the only one that said, “You are not good enough and you need a savior.”
  • As I was learning about Christianity I started hearing all these terms that my non-christian friends weren’t using. “Evangelism.” For my non-christian friends it was a list of ‘don’t do’s’.
  • I previously defined God’s will by the path of least resistance.
  • We are addicted to our comfort so we define God’s will by the path of least resistance.
  • We’ve turned christianity into concerts. The very thing that the gospel preaches is that God is establishing a family that is characterized by love.
  • We have to begin with the end in mind.
  • What is our ultimate goal?
  • Jesus in the book of Matthew is establishing a family that is characterized by the love of God. That is at the heart of what we’re talking about with disciple making.
  • “This is my beloved Son with whom I am well pleased.”
  • When we talk about establishing a discipleship culture we need to remember that God was with Jesus.
  • We need to recognize that we are planting families.
  • The church is not like a family. The church is a family. It’s the primary family.
  • 70-80% of african american kids are raised without a father in the home.
  • Too many of us run our churches like orphanages instead of like families.
  • Orphanages have a bunch of over-worked caretakers, and under-served children.
  • A family understands that we are responsible for one another.
  • God’s presence encourages us to live with Jesus and not live for Jesus.
  • Living for God produces moralism. It is motivated by keeping His love. Living with God is relational.
  • The problem is that our approach to God starts out with sacrificing. But that is built on us and not God.
  • As we grow in a healthy christian life we realize the holiness of God and we realize our sinfulness.
  • We are saved by grace, but many of us try to keep it by the law.
  • How do we live and walk with Jesus instead of living for Jesus?
  • Approach God with a spirit of need.
  • When you know that you are in need, then we yearn for presence.
  • Many people are first converted to the christian community rather than the christian God.
  • Love the Lord your God. Love your neighbor. Then do whatever else you want to do.
  • The problem is no the harvest. The problem is the lack of laborers.
  • We all talk about life-on-life discipleship, but we define that as a once per week meeting at Starbucks.
  • How do we live with the people that God has called us to minister to?
  • How do we recapture the art of hospitality?
  • When we talk about disciple making we don’t treat people like people, we treat them like projects.
  • Are we ready as a church to welcome all the people that no one else wants?
  • Help us to be the church in the city so that we can be more welcome to those who are in the city.
  • How do we create space not in order to change people, but in order to create space for change to take place?
  • My wife and I want to consistently use our house as a weapon for the gospel.
  • We need to actually create that space so that people can actually live with us.
  • We’re afraid of who we really are.
  • We need to know how to be human. And to be human is to be in need of a savior.
  • I don’t pastor so that I can preach, but I pastor so that I can make disciples.

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