“Christ’s Mission is Our Mission” – If we truly believe this, then one of the most important questions to ask is, “What is Christ’s mission?” If we look back at what the Gospels tell us, we see that his priority was to bring the peace and love of God (“kingdom of God”) to all people, which involved — in his culture and time — reforming the Jewish faith, which had become overly focused on making sure that religious rules were followed, at the expense of suffering people.
When, at the start of his ministry, Jesus read from Isaiah, “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to bring good news to the poor …” (Luke 4: 18-19) he was proclaiming that he would not neglect the needs of the poor and suffering around him. In fact, he regularly talked with the marginalized of his society – including those considered sinners (women of ill repute, lepers, tax collectors, etc.).
This week’s Leading Mission Tip is for your congregation to ask itself what could be some difficult questions:
(1) Who are the suffering in our community?
(2) Which issue do we feel called to as a congregation, considering the gifts we have? [This will probably take concentrated prayer over a period of time, perhaps months. A plan from the pastoral team is the first step. It is possible that activities already in motion may need to be reconsidered, as the congregation feels led to minister in a particular area.]
The next few Leading Mission Tips will focus on ways the congregation can explore its calling in its own community. We hope you will make use of your congregation’s Mission Center Support Minister through this process of seeking God’s will.