People are at the center of gospel movements—people who God wants to redeem, people who are hungry to know God and experience his truth in their lives.
Gospel movements often start with a single relationship with one person who we call a “person of peace.” In many cases, this person is one who seems to have been prepared in advance to know God and to be a “gateway” for others in the community to know him as well.
If you want to be part of God’s redemptive work in your place, start by praying for and looking for “people of peace.”
People of peace have these characteristics (H.O.R.S.E.):
- Hungry spiritually: The Holy Spirit brings this hunger through people, events, and circumstances.
- Open relationally: They are open to us and to our story.
- Responsive to discipleship: They are ready to discover the life changing truths of the Bible.
- Share in community: They readily share with people in their network of relationships about the truths they are learning and invite them to join them.
- Emerge in leadership: As time goes by they grow in their capacity to influence others.
When you meet these people, pay attention! God is up to something!
Encountering a person of peace is often a “God thing,” a divinely orchestrated encounter, but that doesn’t mean we have a passive role (Ephesians 2:10). If we’re serious about being part of God’s plan, we can take active steps to cross paths with these kinds of people. How do we do that? The New Testament is full of stories that give insight into how and where to look.
We've put together a guide that describes seven ways to find and connect with people of peace.
Each of these ways to find people of peace are illustrated through biblical and personal examples in the guide:
1. Engaging those we know relationally
2. Spending time in promising settings
3. Encounters where they find us
4. Entry through another saying, "you should talk to..."
5. Expeditions with a team ready to "hit the streets"
6. Embedding within a group
7. Empowering other leaders to reach those in their network
You can download the guide, The Power of One: Connecting With People of Peace, here.
As you read through these steps, get ready to take some notes, answer personal questions, and get going with some concrete steps you can take to find the people of peace near you! Better yet, consider going through this study with a group and engaging the people God has placed around you together!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Phil Alessi and his wife, Ruthann, have been with CRM since 2002 and currently serve on the Accelerate Team in Northwest Indiana. They have discipled people of peace who have ignited gospel movements in area jails and prisons. Their vision is to mentor and multiply the leaders of Disciple Making Movements.
If you have questions about people of peace and Disciple Making Movements, we would love to get you in touch with Phil or another staff. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.