Monday, January 17, 2011

Being Missional Families

I am up in the middle of the night. 

And I think God is doing it to me.

Tossing and turning for an hour and a half in bed, I can't get thoughts about missional living out of my brain.  And believe me, I am trying, because I really just want to go back to sleep.  I have to chase a two year old around in a few short hours.  But it's no use.  So I'm up, out of bed, to the computer, researching.

I google: "Being a missional family"

Results:  "Did you mean: Being a missionary family"

Now I'm awake.  Google's programmed response shot me straight up in my chair.

No, Google, no I did not mean "being a missionary family."  We have come to believe, as American Christians, that missions are for families who travel overseas and live in the dirt and eat weird food and don't wear make-up and build things and......................  What happened to the day in and day out missional command of Christ for EVERY believer?  Have our families lost sight of this?  Do we think "missions" are to be the responsibility of a select few who "have a heart" to live in another country, or do we see missional living as a central building block in the foundation of our family make up?  Do we have to be a "missionary family" to be missional in our family, community, and world?  Or in another sense, should not every Christian family be a missionary family, no matter your address?

I want to share a short excerpt with you from a book I'm reading (a refreshingly challenging book!) called, Radical, by David Platt.
"Where in the Bible is missions ever identified as an optional program in the church?  We have just seen that we were all created by God, saved from our sins, and blessed by God to make His glory known in all the world.  Indeed, Jesus Himself has not merely called us to go to all nations; He has created us and commanded us to go to all nations.  We have taken this command, though, and reduced it to a calling - something that only a few people receive.

I find it interesting that we don't do this with other words from Jesus.  We take Jesus' command in Matthew 28 to make disciples of all nations, and we say, "That means other people."  But we look at Jesus' command in Matthew 11:28, "Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest," and we say, "Now, that means me."  We take Jesus' promise in Acts 1:8 that the Spirit will lead us to the ends of the earth, and we say, "That means some people."  But we take Jesus' promise in John 10:10 that we will have abundant life, and we say, "That means me."

In the process we have unnecessarily (and unbiblically) drawn a line of distinction, assigning the
obligations of Christianity to a few while keeping the privileges of Christianity for us all."
I think the Lord got me out of bed tonight (eerrr, this morning) to begin showing me that He wants my family to be missional.  And not because He is "calling" us to it, but because He has commanded it of all believers and wants us to obey Him.

I am excited to obey Him in this.  I am excited to seek out ways to be missional in my family, in our city, and in the world.  And I am excited about the conversations that we might have about it here at Life On Purpose.

Life In Purpose, indeed.

1 comment:

  1. Wow. I stumbled upon your post looking for a guide to soaking flour and found something totally different instead. I feel like I could have written this post because I know exactly what it is like to be up in the middle of the night stressing about how to live a missional life. It is something I've been struggling with and praying about for months now. Thank you for writing about this topic because I was starting to wonder if I was the only one who thought this way!


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