Friends, Food & The Gospel
Andy Moyle (Lead Elder at Gateway Church, Kings Lynn) has written a fantastic book on an alternative look at evangelism. Here he explains the story behind the book.
A few days before my 30th birthday, I had a wake up call that has fuelled the passion that burns in me ever since. I was driving down a country lane on a dark winters evening when a drunk driver swerved past me and hit a passing motorcyclist. I skidded to a stop, jumped out and heard the screams coming from the upturned van in a ditch. Grabbing a torch I set out to find the motorcyclist on the field. He was dead, lifeless eyes staring up at me. Moments before he had been heading home from work to his young wife and two children. Now he was facing eternity. At that moment as I wondered where he had gone to, I knew I realised to spend the rest of my life making disciples.
HEARING FROM GOD
Fast forward to last year, when a prophetic team from City Church Cambridge were prophesying over our emerging leaders group. “You need to start writing about what you have learned.” I had been itching to write a book for years, now I had a "Go" from the Lord and started writing "Friends, Food and the Gospel."
I don’t find street evangelism easy and I really struggle to go up to strangers with a treasure hunting map. What I have found over the last 15 or so years is that we can all easily be involved in mission. When Jesus told the disciples to "Come follow me, I will make you fishers of men", he was talking to a bunch of subsistence fisherman well used to working as a team. Their livelihoods and their lives depended on it. Picture it for a moment. Peter was boss, standing at the front. He knew where to go and watched out for shoals of fish to catch. James and John, nicknamed "sons of thunder", hoisted sails, cast nets and rowed hard. That is when they weren't arguing. I can see Andrew at the helm as Peter pointed where to go. Zebedee, the oldest, would often have been fast asleep snuggled in among the nets, ready to spring into action when needed.
Friends, Food and the Gospel comes out of the realisation that Jesus wants Everyone a Witness and that works best as a team, where everyone is doing what they are wired to do. Some are great Connectors, making friends easily and inviting them to things, others are Reasoners, able to answer questions. Servers are great at helping put on socials and events. The Storytellers are great at telling stories of salvation and God’s intervention. The Power folks love to use spiritual gifts with non-believers to help them see how great God is and how much He loves us. And the Harvesters are great at leading people to Christ and starting the discipleship process. The traditional evangelist is a harvester. Friends, Food and the Gospel is about equipping and realising everyone in your small group to get involved as a team - making friends, having parties (Jesus loved a good party) and reaching them with the Gospel.
We have a lot of parties - for a birthday, Burns night, St Patricks, Fireworks Night, hot summers evenings desperate for a BBQ, cold winters nights for soup and jacket potatoes - any excuse to gather friends together, share food and see what the Holy Spirit will do. In the book I explain the process of making disciples, how that works in different cultures and how to do Friends, Food and the Gospel in practice.
HAVE YOU GOT YOUR COPY YET?
The book came out just before Christmas and sales have been great - I think it’s a great tool for leadership teams and small group leaders to mobilise their small groups to be outward looking and make disciples in a fun, easy way.
Angela Kemm and Mike Betts were very encouraging about the project…
“Every now and again I pick up a book and find it quite excellent. This is one of those books! Andy has written a different kind of book on evangelism in which he makes it easy and reachable for the ‘ordinary’ person to relate to people over food, friendship and fun. I recommend this book most highly.” Angela Kemm – Prophetic Evangelist, City Church Cambridge/RM Prophetic Team
“As Christians we are first and foremost called to be ‘witnesses’ to Christ. One of the most simple and effective ways to facilitate this is through hospitality and the simple befriending of people that flows from it. This book helpfully suggests ideas and inspires confidence that indeed everyone can be a witness, working together can be fun, natural and that sharing our faith is not only for a few very confident and gifted believers“
Mike Betts – Team Leader, Relational Mission.