Partying for Jesus

Everyone likes to party and many people will give up a lot of things to have fun at a party. If that’s the case, why don’t you plan giving people an opportunity to meet Jesus at a party. Our church grew when we began to have parties for Jesus consistently. A Jesus party is simply a gathering “designed to mix our unchurched friends with some of our Christian friends to facilitate their interaction and do some relationship building” with the hope of eventually introducing these friends to Christ.

As Christians, we need to remember, that we can do many good things for God, but if we do not truly love others, it is all for nothing!

Matthew came up with the idea

Luke 5:27-32(TLB)

Later on, as Jesus left the town he saw a tax collector—with the usual reputation for cheating—sitting at a tax collection booth. The man’s name was Levi. Jesus said to him, “Come and be one of my disciples!” So, Levi left everything, sprang up, and went with him. Soon Levi held a reception in his home with Jesus as the guest of honor. Many of Levi’s fellow tax collectors and other guests were there. But the Pharisees and teachers of the Law complained bitterly to Jesus’ disciples about his eating with such notorious sinners. Jesus answered them, “It is the sick who need a doctor, not those in good health. My purpose is to invite sinners to turn from their sins, not to spend my time with those who think themselves already good enough.”

You learn 9 things from this story

  1. You have a duty to introduce your friends to Jesus and your church
  2. Unbelievers will gladly come to a party
  3. Anyone who thinks of themselves highly to associate with sinners shouldn’t be welcomed
  4. There should be a lot of believers also around to mix
  5. A party is a safe and hospitable setting for unbelievers to receive Christ
  6. They get to see how believers also have fun and experience the love of God being shown to one another
  7. Send as many invitations as possible to unbelievers
  8. The gospel is shared at this party
  9. Souls are won at the end of the day

Benefits of Jesus Parties

  1. Unbelievers will gladly come to a party than a church
  2. Unbelievers can meet the Lord in a safe and hospitable setting like a party
  3. They get to see how believers also have fun and experience the love of God being shown to one another
  4. The gospel is shared at this party
  5. Souls are won at the end of the day

What makes Jesus parties work

Invitation

  1. If there won’t be any new or unbeliever faces, you can call it off. These parties are for outreach reasons.
  2. Every church member must intentionally invite their unbeliever friends.
  3. Get an invitation list which is long. Have a prayer list of unbeliever friends and pray for them every day to be at this party. 
  4. Paul spoke of the fact that we are debtors to those who do not yet know the good news
  5. I have found that often time people will not respond till the third, fourth, sixth or tenth invitation. Keep inviting. Keep calling. Keep emailing.
  6. A personal invitation to a non-Christian (“I’m going to this party. Would you like to come with me?”) as opposed to a more generic invitation (handing a student a flyer) is more likely to get a non-Christian to come to a party.

Organization

  1. Pray for the party for souls to be won and relationships to be established
  2. There should be a lot of food and nonalcoholic drinks
  3. If anyone wants to bring anything, it should be allowed. This makes them feel important also
  4. A lot of believers need to be there to mix. It’s an outreach event
  5. The believers should be trained in the art of communicating and making friends with the SSG (Secular à Spiritual à Gospel) approach to effectively sharing of the gospel

During the Party

  1. Play gospel music that unbelievers would dance to. This includes gospel hip-pop, gospel reggae, gospel rock etc.
  2. It is not enough to invite them; you have to be nice to them. You have to talk to them. You have to pay attention to them.
  3. Make sure church members aren’t enjoying the worldly ways.
  4. Make sure the order of events is controlled by the church.

Games you can play at the party for everyone to enjoy

  1. Charade: One person is given a word and the person is to describe it without words and only actions and their group is to mention the word
  2. Tapping thighs: The group picks a category and everyone is supposed to mention a word at the beat of your thighs being tapped and the one who says it at the wrong end of the beat or can’t come up with an item in that category is out. An example of a category is cars. So, at the beating of everyone’s thighs rhythm one person starts: civic, and another says Camry, and Prizm and escort etc. till someone gets it wrong, and you start all over
  3. Dancing competition: Play a song and let people dance and the best dancer is picked.
  4. Musical chairs: Place chairs around in a circle and start and stop music and people should sit down when the music stops. The one who doesn’t get a chair goes out. There should be one more person than chairs
  5. Graduate Mind Reading: Print about 20 papers and give 1 to 1 person and 4 to random people who know him/her partially well or quite well. Mark answers and see who wins afterwards. It can be a cell group based thing to see which cell group knows each other more. It’s a learning experience. See it in Appendix G
  6. Guess who: Take a piece of paper and write something someone has to describe. That person doesn’t see what is written but pasted on their back. The people can only respond yes/no and the person is supposed to ask yes/no questions to figure what is behind. Pick 2 groups of 5 and let them compete for 2 minutes each (Nancy)
  7. Limbo: Get a stick and let 2 people hold it and let music be in the background. Go under the stick without touching it or falling down and then you are in the next round with the music beat. You can call 10 people
  8. Musical Partners: start with 2 couples and when the music stops, they separate and pick a partner to the floor to dance with
  9. Famous Person: Call 5 people to act out famous people and let the people say who

Whichever game it is, you can introduce the gospel with that game. That’s the most effective way I have noticed.

Types of Jesus Parties

  1.  A picnic
  2.  A pizza party
  3.  Pool party
  4.  Game night (outdoor or indoor)
  5.  A Birthday party
  6.  Super Bowl Party
  7.  A Christmas Tea
  8.  Block party
  9.  Graduation party

The SSG approach of sharing the gospel

  1. The first S means Secular. First talk about secular things with the person. Find about their school, work, hobbies, family, friends, aspirations etc. People love to talk about themselves and so just ask questions centered on these and answer theirs also
  2. The second S means Spiritual. As you speak to the person, any of these topics can get you to ask a spiritual question. Transition and talk about spiritual things. You can ask how the person thinks of spiritual things and keep asking questions and here it is very important that you listen and just ask questions. Whatever they think, they have reasons for it so don’t talk down on it. That’s important but continue talking on spiritual things and you can also share what you think of those same questions and especially have testimonies to share. Plan testimonies of how you met Christ ahead of time and how Christ has changed your life.
  3. G means Gospel. When there’s a chance, you can share the gospel in a long or short sense to the person. You might want to practice a special way you present the gospel. I ask: “Has anyone picked the bible to show you how to go to heaven when you die?” 98% of the time, they will say no and then you respond: “Do you want me to show you?” 100% of the time they say yes. They are now in listening mode and you talk. Usually the short version is encouraged 

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