Missional

missional-livingI have read so many blogs about being Missional, heard so many people at conferences that talk about being missional. But yet the vast majority of them are not living Missionally.  Too many who are not living Missionally criticize those who are. And too many talk about it, tell others to live Missionally while not living it themselves. And that is so wrong, people should be leading, teaching by example, if you are not doing it then you need to get busy and live that way if you want to talk about it.

In light of that, this is what I now ask people who say they are living Missionally, who write and speak about living Missionally. Because I ask these very questions of myself.

How may people did you share the gospel of Jesus with today? This week?
How many came to the LORD while you shared the Gospel with them today? This week?
How may people did you baptized this week? (it should match the question above)
Who are you currently discipling? (you meet with daily long term as did Jesus)

The above is the great “mission” given to every follower of Christ in Mat 28:19, Mark 16:15 and in Act’s 1:8.

All of these are Jesus’ marching orders to His followers, the mark of a follower of Christ, at the core of Jesus mission for us. It is imposable to be on Jesus’ mission unless you are doing these things, this was/is His mission on earth.

Next I ask:

Are you feeding the hungry? Did you today? This week? How did you personally do it?
Are you clothing the naked? Did you today? this week? How did you personally do it?
Are you giving drink the they thirsty? Did you today? this week? How did you personally do it?
Are you visiting, lay hands on and pray for the sick? Did you today? this week?
Are you taking in strangers? Did you today? this week?
Are you visiting those imprisoned? Did you today? this week?
Are you setting any captives free? Did you today? this week? How did you?

This is what Jesus said if you do not do the things above: Then He will answer them, ‘Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to Me.’ These will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.” Mat 25:31-46 Jesus did all these things daily during His life,  so He is saying if you are saved, you too will do them, continue His mission.

I believe all of those are the basic requirements to live Missionally (and according to Jesus the actions of someone whom is saved), living on mission is to be living on the mission of Jesus. So unless we are doing them and doing them daily,  we are not on His mission,  living Missionally according to Jesus. Yes there is more to living on mission, Missionally, but these are the core, must be doing things.

In summery, I believe the only way we can claim to live on mission, to be living Missionally is if our life is fulfilling Mat 28:19, Mark 15:16 Acts 1:8 and Mat 25: 31-43. So I will ask you the same questions I ask myself, how did you live those out today? This week?

So before you write a book, blog about, speak at a conference or tweet about being missional, I will ask you to answer the above questions first. Before you tell others to or how to, or criticize those who are living it out.

As for myself this is how I chose to live on mission, to live Missioanlly, by imitating the life of Jesus, being obedient to His commands (like the ones above), to continue His mission with my life as I see in scripture.

3-20-10Got my new passport in the mail today, I had let it expire not having any need for it. But after having been lead by a burning desire to get it renewed and what seems to have been the leading of the Spirit to get it, I have it and am free to move about the world again.

The very day I applied for it I was given two words from the LORD that where related to me getting it, it could be used to enable the fulfillment of the words given to me. (read here)

I prayed over it and claimed Is 2:8 over it: “Ask of Me, and I will surely give the nations as Your inheritance, And the very ends of the earth as Your possession.” I even wrote it on a stick note and attached it to my passport.

I also claim Mark 16:15 “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation.” and that is my plan for it.

I want to fill up every page of it with places that I have been, places that I preached the gospel, planted churches, feed the hungry, clothed the naked and set the captives free.

I say to the LORD as did Isaiah: “Here I am LORD, send me!” I am ready to Go!

What is the difference today between the  men in the upper room in Jerusalem 2000 years ago that tuned the world upside down and the church today?

They believed in and walked in the Holy Spirit and All His power and gifts. And lived out what they believed, they where obedient to the commands of Jesus to Go, and did all he told them. And so they turned the world upside down.

Any follower of Jesus can do the same thing today, all they have to do is be filled with the Holy Spirit. And Go in all His power and gifts and you too could turn the world upside down. But you must believe the same Holy Spirit that was in them, that raised Christ from the dead is the same today. And will equip you with all the same power and gifts that He did them 2000 years ago. Everything you read about the Holy Spirit and His gifts are just a real today and yours for the asking, everyone of them. And that the commands of Jesus are just as valid, Go!

Just another simple thought for the day.

rescueWe have all heard the saying about firemen, especial on 9/11, “that they rush into buildings everyone else is rushing out of”. The type of people that are firemen, hero’s are the ones that go when other will not, rush into action on a moments notice. Run head on into danger to save others, to meet an enemy head on, a situation of need, crisis will always prove character, separate the men from the boys as it says. It also can prove motive, revile the devote when it come to service to God.

One thing that caught my attend with the Haiti crisis was the multitude of Americans who where there when the earthquake hit that where trying to get out. But what I was surprised about was the number of people who where there on “mission” trips who where trying to high tail it out of there. Whole church groups who said they where their on a mission to relive the suffering of the Haiti people. So at the same time literally hundreds of thousands of Christians are trying get in to help, others who where already there. Claim they where there to help, where tying to flee the very opportunity to do what the rest of us pray for the opportunity to do, Make a difference in the hour of life and death need. To make a difference for God, to save lives, to help the helpless.

As the saying goes “Adversity doesn’t build character – it’s reveals character”. and I think this very much did so. Just like as the army of Israel stood back from he challenge of Goliath, only one man rushed in to meet the challenge that was before all.

So many live for the opportunity to be in a place to live beyond the norm, be stretched beyond themselves, to be is such a place in history to do great things for God and others, while other run from it.

Lord may I be found ready and willing to meet every opportunity before me, may I be one who runs in not away.

2328879637_c0d2e376ff What if we live our lives from now to the moment we leave this earth, in such a way that our lives, and live message was so impacting on the culture.  That it actual changes the culture of you neighborhood, your city. That you lived a life that was so unique, so compelling, that it actual changed the culture. Not is a worldly way, not for worldly agendas’ like the Republican or Democratic party, or a church domination, your own agenda, but for the sake of the gospel, for the Kingdom of God agenda.

And what if it even went beyond that, impacted the nation, and even expanded across the world to every nation. Even still effected people long after you had died. God did that though the people of the first century church, with people far less equipped and educated than you. With out the internet, cell phones, twitter or even the US Mail. With cars and jets to get across the globe hours.

Just think what He could do though you, if Him and His kingdom where you priority in life. If you chose to live a God centered, Jesus soaked life of mission.

Just something to think about.

discipling All followers of Christ are called to make disciples, not simply believers like so many churches do, Jesus addressed that issue when He stated "Even the demons believe–and shudder!." You see believing who Jesus is has never really been the issue, Satan himself believe who Jesus is, in fact he knows for certain who Jesus is. The Issue has always been following, obeying, that is making Him Lord of you life. And that is where we come in, our call, mission given to us in Mat 28:19 "Go therefore and Make disciples of All the nations." Our job is not to make believers out of people, but rather followers of Jesus.

Every follower of Christ if they are living obedient to Christ, obeying all His commandments, as He state if you love Him then you are obeying All of His commands. The you are fulfilling the great commission as it is called Mat 28:18-20 and are making disciples. Every follower of Christ should have Timothy’s in their life. Everyone should without exception who is a follower of Jesus should have people in their life they are discipling, and doing so the way Jesus modeled for us, doing daily life with them, teaching them by how they live and with their words the life lived in Christ. Teaching them about God and Jesus, the word of God, how to know and use their spiritual gifts, and how to proclaim the gospel and make disciples themselves.

As Jesus showed us this is not an over night task, a Sunday school class you take for six weeks and graduate, it is a life time commitment, too Jesus three years full time to prepare His disciples to Go out on their own. Are you better than Jesus, more able than Him to disciple other, I thinks not. You should be giving years to disciple others, do life with them on a daily bases to teach them, disciple them into their new life in Christ. It is not your pastors job, a Sunday school teachers job, a book to be read, but a life to be lived out.

Go and Make disciples.

 

Part 8 in the series

dirty water 4 Dig a Well, Go to Guatemala, El Salvador, Mexico, Honduras, East Africa

Over one billion people lack access to safe drinking water worldwide. Polluted water isn’t just dirty—it’s deadly. Some 1.8 million people die every year of diarrheal diseases like cholera. Tens of millions of others are seriously sickened by a host of water-related ailments—many of which are easily preventable.

More than 1.5m children under five die each year because they lack access to safe water and proper sanitation. Every day water-related diseases claim the lives of 5000 children under the age of five. That’s roughly one every 15 seconds. Households in rural Africa spend an average of 26% of their time fetching water, and it is generally women who are burdened with the task.

If one million Christ followers where to go for 7 day each over the next year they would dig enough wells to end the water crises.

 

Part 7 in the series

girls cheering on

I attended some of my nieces softball games the past two weekend, loved watching those girls play (10 to 12 years olds) , they are so amazing, the sills and abilities they posses at such a young age.

One of the things that caught my attention was that when they make an errors, mess up, strike out, drop a ball their teammates still say good job, you’ll get it next time and high five them, the coaches yell out good try, way to try, sake it off. As well as all of us in the stands, cheered for them just as if they hit a home run even when it was a pop fly out, shout out good hit! Not one of those girls is allowed to feel like they failed, no matter how badly they messed up.

That made me think of the verse Heb 12:1  "Therefore let us also, seeing we are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us," And how we have our own cheering section in heaven, but we should have one here to. When we mess up, make mistake, the body of Christ should be like my nieces teammates there to high five us, say good try, you’ll get it next time when we strikeout. But I do not see that happening very much at all in the church today, and that saddens me.

We the church, the body of Christ must, need to learn from girls softball, learn to be a team that supports each other no matter what, how bad we mess up. I saw how much it effected those girls, their spirits, them emotionally, made them what to do better next time. It keep them in the game with high spirits no matter the score, because they new they were winners no matter what the scoreboard said, glad to be on the team and in the game with them, and so should every member of the body of Christ.

Baptize someone, nearest lake, stream or pool.

The second command of the great commission to all followers of Christ is to baptize new followers of Christ, most certainly referring to someone whom the Lord revealed Christ to during your sharing the gospel with them. This is the duty of every follower of Christ to do, if you have not done so ether you have not been proclaiming the gospel as Jesus command you to and have no need to, or you have been passing the duty on to someone else, like maybe your pastor. But it is your duty, the is one of the greatest joys and experience in your walk with God you can have is to to baptize someone into the Kingdom of God, why would you not want to do this! Why would you not want to be part of this glorious event, the induction of someone into the new life in Christ?

For every follower of Christ this should be a common occurrence in your life. It is according to Jesus something that is to be a action performed by all of His followers. If you are not doing part 5, sharing Christ, the gospel with others, then get busy doing what Christ called you to do, thus creating the need to baptize others in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit” Mat 28:19

Like I said in post 5, Chose this day to live, be like Philip in Act 8: 26-40. We read in Act 8:38 “And he commanded the chariot to stop, and they both went down into the water, Philip and the eunuch, and he baptized him.” Only you can chose to live like that, be like him. Go and baptize in the name of Jesus.

Part 6 in the series

Preach the Gospel, To All the World.

Jesus told His followers in Mark 16:15 “And He said to them, Go into all the world, proclaim the gospel to all the creation.” despite Satan’s influence on people in the church who introduced the doctrine in the 90’s of Not sharing the gospel with others. That people by simply by being around you through osmoses will become followers of Christ. Even thou all references to witness or witnessing in the book of Acts are public, verbal proclamation of the gospel outright. Jesus never taught or instructed His disciples to anything other than out right proclaim the gospel. There is never the concept in Scripture that witness can be private or simply lived out, but rather something to be proclaimed, shouted from the house tops.

Romans 10:14 tells us “How then shall they call on Him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in Him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without preaching?” It is the job of every follower of Christ, to proclaim the gospel of Jesus to all of the world. With words, with the actual gospel of Jesus. Do not listen to others, people who tell you not to share Christ, not to proclaim the gospel, just live a “good” life and others will get saved with out a word spoken. (Note, in order for your life to be an actual witness as they say, to reveal Jesus and the gospel, you must be living a life of obedience to Christ, and imitating His life. Which means you must be verbal sharing, proclaiming the Gospel, just as Jesus did and said to do. It’s a catch 22.)

In Luke 15:10 Jesus says ““…I tell you, there is joy before the angels of God over one sinner who repents.” how can anyone who is a follower of Christ not want to be part of that. Be part of an act that brings so much joy to all of heaven. This is what the Gospel is all about, why Jesus came and walked among us, what He sent His followers to do, Preach the gospel, so Go and proclaim the gospel to the world!

Chose this day to live, be like Philip in Act 8: 26-40. We read in Act 8:35 “Then Philip opened his mouth, and beginning with this Scripture he told him the good news about Jesus.” Chose this day to live like him, to Go out into the world with that intent, to share on purpose. Only you can chose to live like that, be like him.

Part 5