By Matt Hein
Jesus is on the move. He’s actively seeking to redeem and restore his creation. And he is especially seeking to redeem and restore people.
Rev. Greg Finke pointed the leadership of St. Luke to this reality, the mission of God, at a recent missional living event. It is a mission focused on a real world full of real people with real names, stories, and sin whom Jesus loves.
And here’s the fun part. Jesus invites us to participate in his mission! We are invited to live missionally with Jesus, joining him in what he’s doing in the lives of real people with real names, stories, and sin.
In his book, Joining Jesus on His Mission, Greg Finke reflects on our participation in God’s mission: “So wherever you go, whether to the ends of the earth or just to work, if there are people there, you can be sure Jesus is up to something… And he invites us to join him.”
Where is Jesus inviting you to join him on his mission? Where is Jesus inviting you to be in relationship with people he is pursuing? Where is Jesus inviting you to invest your time so that you are in a position to point someone to Jesus?
For most of us, our next step to living missionally is simple. Look around your local community, in your neighborhood, and at the homes surrounding you. There is someone there who Jesus loves and wants to bless through you. Start by learning their name and story. Spend time together, pray for them, and be open to moments when Jesus invites you share his story with them.
For others, a missional next next step may be to serve in your community with your home group or another small group of disciples. Service opportunities allow you to bless real people and enter into relationship with them. One of our home groups has committed to serving together with Friends in Deed this fall. Another group of St. Luke disciples serves at Hope Clinic. The good done through service opportunities opens doors to share Jesus’ grace with real people whom he loves.
Perhaps a next step for you could be far from your home serving on of a short-term mission team. Beginning in winter 2017, St. Luke will be sending teams overseas to work in Guatemala (Groundwork Guatemala – Jan. 2017), Uganda (Women of the Pearl – Feb. 2017), and a potential third location (MOST Ministries). Short-term mission trips can open your eyes to the mission of God in powerful ways, which propel you back into your neighborhood with new courage to join Jesus on his mission everyday.
“Jesus is on a mission and he invites you to join him. He does not give you a mission to do for him. He is on a mission and invites you to come with him.”
I love these words of invitation from Joining Jesus on His Mission.
Whether in your neighborhood, in your local community with a group of disciples, or as part of a short-term overseas mission team, Jesus invites you to take a next step with him into the lives of real people he has come to redeem.
Our January short-term mission team to Guatemala (January 21-28, 2017) is forming now. Join team leader Jennifer Hein in rooms 104 & 105 for an informational meeting following the 11am service (~12:30pm) on either Sunday October 2 or 9, 2016. Learn more about Groundwork Guatemala, what work the Guatemala team will be doing, and other trip details. Contact Jennifer for more information.