One Pastor to Another: Downsize and Join #TheJesusChallenge

ChurchLeaders | 4/22/2019 | Staff
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Pastor Jomo Johnson of the Church for Black Men & Families in Washington, D.C., has issued #TheJesusChallenge, calling Christians to embrace minimalism for a year. Johnson exhorted multiple Christians (including rapper Lecrae) to participate in the challenge, but the first person he specifically called on was John Gray, pastor of Relentless Church in South Carolina.

“I believe that Easter Sunday is the perfect time to challenge us as Christians,” said Johnson in a video he posted on social media. “Many of us are coming off of Lent, we’re coming off of sacrifice, and I believe now is really a time, especially for American Christians, to embrace this unique challenge.”

Basis - Challenge - Johnson - Jesus - Teaching

As a basis for the challenge, Johnson referenced Jesus’ teaching that those who lose their lives will find them. He also mentioned the account of the rich young ruler, whom Jesus told to sell all he had so that he would have treasure in heaven.

“We want to be able to follow Jesus in this lifestyle of minimalism that we might be able to give more to Him, more of our hearts, more of ourselves, and also more to others,” said Johnson. The challenge starts on May 1st and consists of giving up one major possession per week, per month, per year, or even per day.

Johnson - Minimalism - Car - Lot - Clothing

Johnson says that he personally decided to embrace minimalism in 2017. He sold his car, got rid of a lot of his clothing, and attempted to do his best to follow Jesus wherever He led. The result was a “really extraordinary experience with Him and relationships with others.” After challenging Pastor Gray directly, Johnson said, “We want to detach from all the materialism that kind of takes our focus away from Jesus and begin to give more liberally.”

Who Is John Gray?

John - Gray - Church - Redemption

John Gray took over Relentless Church (formerly Redemption...
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