The Heart of the Mission
Mission is not directly about church growth. Mission is directly about communicating God’s love for the world in word and deed. In Jesus’ ministry, sometimes people followed and sometimes people walked away. At all times, Jesus loved people towards the Kingdom and Family of God. This is the heart of mission for the church.
- Going (not expecting people to come to us)
- Baptizing (a full immersion in the life of the Divine community)
- Teaching (the Good News we find in Jesus begins to impact our lives right here and now!)
- Evangelism: verbally sharing the Story of Jesus and inviting others to receive God’s grace, join the Story, and follow Jesus
- Service: actively meeting the physical needs of someone else
- Justice: advocating for the voiceless and oppressed, often addressing systemic issues at some level of society
- Community Building: bringing people together, especially people who are experiencing isolation or would not normally connect
- Support: offering monetary and in-kind donations to support the work of other ministries, organizations, and missionaries. These ministries may be doing any combination of evangelism, service, justice, and community-building work.
- Note: Not every mission ministry/event needs to include all five of these dimensions, nor does there need to be a separate ministry/event for each of these dimensions.
Ministries of Mercy, by Tim Keller, pp. 46-54 [See Church Library]
For evangelism, read the short book, Sharing Your Faith with Friends and Family by Michael Green [See Church Library]
Bob Lupton on Toxic Charity [http://www.relevantmagazine.com/god/mission/features/29220-when-charity-turns-toxic]
Listen to the sermons, “Glowing with Christ’s Love” (10/21/12) and “Net-Menders or People-Fishers” (9/9/12)
Listen to Bob Lupton on Toxic Charity [http://poddirectory.com/episode/9799613/1052014-toxic-charity]
- Ed Stetzer: “The church is sent on mission by Jesus. It's not that the church has a mission, but rather that the mission has a church. We join Jesus on His mission.”
- NT Wright: “God is the one who satisfies the passion for justice, the longing for spirituality, the hunger for relationship, the yearning for beauty. And God, the true God, is the God we see in Jesus of Nazareth, Israel's Messiah, the world's true Lord.”
Diagram from Eddie Gibbs in ChurchNext. [See Church Library] Descriptions from Pastor Jon Komperda.