Nov. 16, 2022.
With Thanksgiving just around the corner, there is a particular divine outpouring that is occurring of which I am deeply grateful…
I am thankful for the historic richness of the Jesus Table that is rebirthing before our eyes.
I am thankful for how church after church is setting a bountiful table each week – offering a living picture of Christ’s lavish Gospel.
I am thankful for the sacrifice of leaders and congregations who are entering challenged neighborhoods and traveling distances each week to provide an Agape’ Table, because they feel everyone should get a chance to be with Jesus.
I am thankful for a renewed understanding of the Jesus Stories which is giving us a powerful voice with our secular neighbors – something that had been lost in recent decades.
I am thankful for a new vision of ‘koininia’ = the deep fellowship that naturally forms at Jesus Tables and among the teams of people who are leading them.
I am thankful for the healing that is flowing from our hands – if we are in the ‘Jesus Table’ business, we are in the ‘Healing’ business.
I am thankful for a re-awakening of the New Passovers which Jesus instituted on the first Holy Week, and the restoration of mission it is offering to the church family.
I am thankful for denominational leaders who are welcoming and supporting Dinner Church planting initiatives throughout their ranks, and watching congregations go from ‘struggling’ to ‘thriving’.
I am thankful for the many people who energetically gather for Dinner Church trainings across the country because they want to maximize their effectiveness.
I am thankful how the Dinner Church is enabling us to live out our foremost Christian vocation – populating heaven.
I am thankful for leaders who are engaging the frontlines of the Gospel, where the inbreaking Kingdom of Jesus is advancing against the uprising kingdom of darkness, and are contending in prayer for the souls of their neighborhoods. Darkness and oppression wins until we show up, then the strongman flees (Ja. 4:7)
I am thankful that Jesus has opened up for us a door in heaven that no one can close (Rev. 3:7), and if that weren’t enough he put the keys to those doors in our pockets (Mt. 16:19) so we can pray with assurance that there will be a constant flow of Jesus’ presence, Jesus’ healing, and Jesus’ embrace at our tables.
YES…I am profoundly thankful to be watching the rebirth of the Jesus Table in our lifetime.
Dr. Verlon and Melodee Fosner have led a multi-site Assemblies of God Dinner Church in Seattle, Washington since 1999 (www.CommunityDinners.com). In this decade when more churches in the U.S. are declining than thriving, and when ninety-six churches a week are closing, Verlon and Melodee sensed that a different way of doing church was needed for their 100-year old Seattle congregation. It soon became obvious that they were not the only ones in need of a different path. They joined the FX team in 2016 and founded the Dinner Church Collective. And then in 2019 founded the Dinner Church School of Leadership. There is a lot to be gained when church leaders begin to see open doors in the American landscape that they had previously overlooked. Therein lies the journey for those who will forge a new future for the American Church.