Years ago, I learned this formula from my friend Mick Woodhead in Sheffield, England. FDM: Focus + Discipline = Momentum.
For years, I have carried a card in my shirt pocket. It says “FDM” on one side. The other side has the formula. It’s a daily reminder to me that Christianity is a movement. In order to be a movement, you must have momentum. Momentum requires focus. Focus requires discipline.
“Discipline” comes from the word “disciple.” Jesus called His equipped followers “disciples.”
In 2 Corinthians 5:9-14, the Apostle Paul writes, “Cheerfully pleasing God is the main thing. Do you think it pleases God when we lack a sense of urgency about those who are without Jesus: in our neighborhood, in our social relationships, in the area of our church?” Is the main thing the main thing for your church? Do you know what is the main thing: for God?
Paul goes on to say that there will come a day when we all will appear before Christ: “We all will one day stand in that place of Judgment” (verse 14). That’s Paul’s urgency to reach lost people before it’s too late.
The clock is always ticking. Everyone dies. Those without Jesus as their Savior live in a situation that is urgent. Do you get that about those around you who are not yet believers? Do you care? Do your actions reflect the urgency? Does your church demonstrate the urgency?
I’ve seen so many churches that take forever to get things done. Their form of government seems like one hurdle after another. It seems like it takes forever to move forward, to get anything done. Why?
Many churches have built a form of decision making that takes forever. It has hoops and loops and layers of logistics that would frustrate anyone. But lost people don’t have “forever.” Nobody does! I just can’t imagine Paul, or Jesus, having all those meetings, all those time-wasting decisions. It seems like the governance structure of most churches, the decision-making approach, was created by the turtle!
The issue behind the issue is usually FDM—or lack of it. Paul, Jesus, and every Christian in fact considers every lost person a four-alarm fire. Urgency is required! Time is of the essence! Perhaps a fire needs to be built under every Christian and in every church.
I remember the story of the church that caught on fire during the middle of the night. All the neighbors were awakened by the commotion and standing in front of their houses in their pajamas. One guy, who belonged to the church, talked to his neighbor, who never went to church and showed no signs of being a Christian. The Christian man asked his neighbor, “I didn’t know you were interested in the church?” The man responded, “Well, I’ve never seen a church on fire before.” That says it all!