"Simplicity is the ultimate form of sophistication." - Da Vinci
When Steve Jobs first unveiled the iphone, the genius was in how simple it was. Its physical design was sleek and straightforward. And it operated intuitively. It didn't come with a 500 page user manual. A child could swipe and click her way around.
But under the simplicity was incredible complexity. Unimaginable technology exists inside the device, making everything click and hum.
Who are you?
What do you believe?
Why does it matter?
If someone asked you these questions, could you give a simple answer? Could you respond in one or two sentences?
When asked about our convictions, we often fumble. We get a unique chance to share our heart, and we end up saying too much or nothing at all. Even mature Christians find it difficult to convey their faith in a clear and understandable way.
In today's culture, it is of critical importance for every follower of Jesus to speak of their faith clearly, concisely, consistently, and in a compelling manner.
Clear: The modern world is inundated with the chaotic noise of millions of competing messages. Can you speak clear enough that the person listening to you can repeat your message in one sentence?
Concise: Our interactions with people are often brief. If you speak about your deepest convictions, you probably have a short window. Can you share the heart of your faith in 60 seconds? This is not to diminish the necessity of longer explanation, but if we can’t summarize our message in one minute, we will be challenged to do it in 60.
Consistent: If you asked ten Christians what the gospel is, you may well get ten different responses. Consistent doesn’t mean that it’s rigidly scripted. Scripture uses a variety of language and metaphors to express the gospel, yet the core of the gospel is fundamentally consistent.
Compelling: In a world of competing narratives, what makes the Christian story uniquely compelling? What is so gripping about Jesus? Why would we ever devote our entire lives to a first century carpenter executed as a criminal? Christians must know the uniquely compelling components of their faith. What makes Jesus unique?
So what about me? What do I say if someone asks me who I am?
I start with two simple words.
These two words are like the iphone, stunningly simple on the surface, but profoundly deep on the inside.
Our church has been chewing on these words for a few years and they're guiding everything we do. Other churches are adopting these words, from Austin to San Francisco. Last week a friend tattooed them on her arms (to my great surprise).
I'm writing a book with these words as the title. My goal is to provide a simple yet substantive answer to the questions: Who are we? What do we believe? Why does it matter?
Join My Tribe by March 1st and I'll send you the introductory story of my upcoming book. Simply enter your e-mail address in the box above (or below if you're on your phone) and hit "subscribe."