I just got back from a ministry trip in New Jersey to celebrate the 5th year anniversary of Grace Christian Church (pastor Jeff Barbieri). I met with the cell leaders on Saturday night and preached on Sunday. Jeff and I excitedly talked about his equipping track. He is passioante about helping his members understand who they are in Christ and is a student of the “exchanged life” (the modern day Keswick movement). Jeff has designed a first-class equipping course that takes all members through a deeper understanding of their identity and identification in Christ.
Jeff believes that effective cell ministry flows naturally from leaders and members who are set free in Christ. If a cell leader, for example, doesn’t know he or she is fully forgiven, it’s hard to be transparent with the members.
We both agreed that a lot of cell literature is very TO DO oriented: “you have to build relationships,” “you have to evangelize more.” The grace-filled life, however, recognizes that Christ accomplishes these things through us. As we’re filled with Jesus, the overflow is to build relationships, witness, etc. Do you agree?
I told Jeff that he needed to publish his training track (and other books on the subject), so the rest of the cell church can benefit from them. In fact, you might want to contact Jeff, asking him about his training track and his passion for teaching on God’s grace.