In the book “Shaped by God’s Heart”, Milfred Minatrea writes, “When the activities of a church focus inward, the church has exchanged its mission for maintenance. True success can only result when the activities of God’s body reflect what is in God’s heart. A missional church is a reproducing community of authentic disciples, being equipped as missionaries sent by God, to live and proclaim his kingdom in their world.”
All churches in the East District are being called to be missional churches. We are being asked to turn our attention on the community and the world all around. If we are faithful, God will provide all we need. “Mission is always in the direction of the other, and away from ourselves”, Minatrea writes.
The church is not meant to be a place we go and hide from the world, the church was meant to be a movement. If we love God, live his mission, love his people and teach them to follow, we change the world. We do that through worshiping, serving, inviting and equipping others. Each church should have a high threshold for membership. If people want to be apart of the church, they should be willing to attend regularly, give their tithe and serve.
In other words, authentic discipleship is costly. As members and believers in Christ, we must accept responsibility for the direction and leadership of the church. We are Jesus’ hands and feet. The church is not a social club – but a covenant family and every member must do their part. If we are the body, all of us are needed.
God is not looking for perfect Christians, so we do not have to be real religious, just real people. God is the only one who should get the glory. People will know when we are just putting up a front, so we must be authentic. Real followers don’t need to have all the answers, they just need to say yes. To lead, teach, step up or to get involved. God will provide all we need.
If we truly believe, there should be signs that others can witness in our lives. If you were on trial for being a Christian, is there enough evidence to convict you? Do you wear your faith on your sleeve or is it hidden under your jacket? Christians must be seen and hear, we were never meant to be the silent type.
A safe boat never leaves the harbor – but boats were not meant to be safe. To head out to sea is to live the adventure. To battle the waves, to catch a large net of fish, to live in the great unknown, that is what living for Jesus is all about. No one ever promised it would be easy. If they did, they lied. The disciples choose to take a stand, no matter the consequences.
Without passion, we are ineffective. Without “The Passion’, we would be lost. Jesus believed and lived out everything the Father expected. His life is our model. The question is: are you ready to say yes to Jesus? May it be so and now let’s live the great adventure!