Monday, October 27, 2014

how to be a missional family

"Go into the world. Go everywhere and announce the Message of God’s good news to one and all. Whoever believes and is baptized is saved; whoever refuses to believe is damned." -Jesus (Matthew 16:15-16 The Message)

We had a busy weekend.

Saturday morning we woke up and cleaned our house from top to bottom. It's for sale and we didn't know if it would need to be shown after we left for the day's activities. (It didn't. Boo.)

Then we drove to a stranger's house. We pulled weeds, trimmed bushes, installed a ceiling fan, insulated the front door, and laid mulch along with fifteen or so other people from our community group.

Afterward we hurried to the football fields, where my boys caught passes in fabulous boyhood glory, or they missed altogether because they are kids and not NFL legends (yet).

When the games were over we drove to our dear friends' house and relished the blessing of how life has woven us together into lifelong relationship. (I was filthy and exhausted and smelled like dirt but they didn't comment- my friends are saints.)

Sunday morning I rolled my window down at the stoplight to chat with the man who daily stands on the corner.

Two hours later I hugged the same man in the lobby of our church. He started coming last week, and it was good to see him there again.

"This is the best thing that's happened to me all day," he said. I blushed and laughed.

We took communion as a church family, and I looked at the bread and juice in my hand. The pieces of my weekend began to fall into place.

Jesus taught us an amazing lesson when He came to earth to be God With Us, and then died so that we could become the family of God.

Family, done properly, is inherently missional.

Why do we go to football games, tend our homes, steward our blessings, and gather together with the people God has gifted to us? Because the gospel shows us we ought to always be loving one another, spending time and effort to cheer, connect, and celebrate the life we share.

Why do we serve strangers, open our lives to the outcast, and prioritize giving out more than we are taking in? Because the gospel shines light on how we ought always to be elevating the lives of others above our own, it shows us that greatness is wrapped up in smallness, and it pushes us out of our comfort and into bearing the brokenness of others.

Our lives were God's most cunning missional outreach. Now we take His love everywhere we go.

Missional living looks like mercy and kindness and compassion and faith and trust and rejoicing and sacrifice and encouragement and honor and truth and grace and vulnerability on our lips and on our calendars and in our everyday interactions with the people in our path.

Sunday after church we had two more football games and then the Harvest Fest at church. The kids won candy playing carnival games, hopped in bouncy houses, and ran around the church parking lot with their friends.

I am grateful that for my kids normal life looks like laying mulch in a single mom's flower bed and then praying a blessing over her before they go play football.

I am glad that it's unsurprising to my children that everyone they know comes back to church on a Sunday night to enjoy a fall afternoon together.

I am blessed that there are so any people who ask my sons if they won their football games, who cheer when they hear they won and who say, "Next time, buddy!" when they hear they lost.

I am grateful for the blessings of living missionally with amazing brothers and sisters in Christ, with Jesus as our center and and His life as our best example of love on display.

Our lives are on mission, and we are also God's great mission field, forever being won by His glorious sacrifice. I don't want any other kind of life. I just want all of this.

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