Quick Q&A with Mike Patz

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What’s up with green?

It’s about a discipleship lifestyle. Yellow and blue make green. Imagine our relationship with God with the color yellow. Imagine our relationship with people with the color blue. We are not called to simply live in the yellow or in the blue, but in the green. The green is the place of health and growth and true discipleship. We use the word worship to describe our relationship with God. When we have truly connected with Him, we feel His heart and move into a life of mission. Authentic community then, is the result of experiencing God and mission together.

If I’m new around here, what might be the first dozen books you’d recommend?

Basic Christianity, by John Stott. Secrets of the Secret Place, by Bob Sorge. Mere Christianity, by C.S. Lewis. Reason for God and The Prodigal God, by Tim Keller.  Knowing God, by J.I. Packer. The Divine Conspiracy, by Dallas Willard. The Shaping of Things to Come, by Michael Frost & Alan Hirsch. Crazy Love, by Francis Chan. Rich Christians in an Age of Hunger, by Ronald Sider. Paul the Spirit and the People of God, by Gordon Fee. Why Revival Tarries, by Leonard Ravenhill.

What’s our approach with college students?

We strongly recommend college students getting involved on campus while rooting themselves in the local church community. What that means for us is trying to send people to campus groups with whom we have a relationship. We especially love these groups: Chi Alpha, Cru, Navigators, FCA, Intervasity, as well as our college micro churches.

At the same time, we feel like the church should offer what an-specific group cannot: intergenerational relationships and discipleship. For that reason, many of our microchurches are open to people of all ages, from college students to married couples to retired men and women.

What preachers have had a strong influence on you?

John Piper, Tim Keller, Tony Evans, Mark Rutland, Martin Luther King, Jr.

What is your approach to preaching?

Jesus-centered. The goal of every sermon is not information-dissemination or an increase in head-knowledge; we try to get people to encounter God and worship on the spot. We tend to preach expository sermons where we go verse-by-verse through books or sections of the Scripture, but the purpose is not simply moral exhortation. We try to make clear application to real life that flows out of an experience with God Himself. It is our conviction that every part of the Bible points to Jesus and His redemption, so we read every little passage and story in the light of the one main story: the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

What sorts of churches do you keep your eye on?

Underground, Tampa. Redeemer Presbyterian, Manhattan. Times Square Church, Manhattan. National Community Church, Washington DC. Mars Hill, Seattle.

What are you guys passionate about?

Radical God-seeking. Commitment to the Scripture. Authentic Holy Spirit experience. God’s compassion for people disconnected from Him. God’s compassion for the poor. Justice. Microchurches. Diversity. Multiplication of everything we do. A humble approach.

Categories: Dear Church Family

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