Chances are if you have been to recent Karis Gatherings, you have heard something mentioned about a "Gospel Wheel".
What is the Gospel Wheel?
At Karis, we believe in three vision values– Gospel, Community, and Mission. All of these point to us, as believers, being intentional in the mission of Gospel-announcing disciple-makers. If you are like me, the whole idea of being missional can seem overwhelming at times and we can often struggle to find a starting point and consistency in our connections. The Gospel Wheel is a missional and relational tool to help put tangible steps to the missional call. It provides us with incremental steps and directions on how to create and develop deeper connections with those we are serving and reaching out to, both individually and through our Missional Communities.
The Gospel Wheel was developed by City on a Hill church in Arnold, MO. Tim Gray, the lead pastor of City on a Hill, says, “We wanted people to realize that it’s not a perfect wheel. It’s not a true linear wheel, it’s multi-directional, more like a spaghetti wheel– where any section can happen at any time, depending on the Holy Spirit.”
So, it’s a relational tool, a multi-directional wheel, but how does it work?
How Does it Work?
The center represents the missional hub– the connection progression. The basic premise is that we want to develop through four stages of connection: 1) Contact, 2) Acquaintance, 3) Friend, and 4) Disciple. We want to learn someone’s name, grow into a deeper relationship with them, learn their story, eventually tell them our story, and then be able to layer God’s story onto theirs.
The Disciple element of connection isn’t necessarily that they are a disciple of Christ, but that we have developed a friendship so deep that the other person feels as though we have their best interests at heart. They are relationally willing to follow us– hopefully to Christ. All of these connections are initiated and driven by the Gospel, prayer, and walking in the Holy Spirit.
The outside of the wheel represents opportunities, activities, and conversations where we can express the Gospel and deepen the connection. Our basic starting point is “Go In Love”, but we may find ourselves at different points around the wheel that the Holy Spirit has made available to us.
How will Karis use the Wheel?
It is our hope that the Gospel Wheel becomes a central component of our MCs and personal missional activity. One of the benefits of the Gospel Wheel is that we can celebrate little steps of connections and the next steps that God has in store for us. It helps us to see growth. And it causes us to be reminded of our reliance on prayer and the Holy Spirit.
During weekly MC gatherings, MC members will talk about connections, pray for future connections, tell about their weekly stories, and celebrate steps. MCs, as a group, will also build relationships with those connections that their members have built– inviting them and their families to a meal, an event, or have an opportunity to serve and love them. The Gospel Wheel helps drive MCs to deeper missional focus.
At Karis, it is our hope, that the Gospel Wheel will help grow us relationally and missional every moment of every day– to become a church that is praying and listening for the next steps and connections that God is pointing us towards.
This blog post originally appeared on the personal blog of Karis Church intern Dave Owens. You can learn more about the Karis Internship here, or support our interns financially if you are interested.