If you have been attending Living Stones for any amount of time, it is clear that we are primarily about one thing... Jesus. We are all about the person and work of Jesus, and we work to fulfill the mission that he has put us here to do. We desire to be in the City of Reno for the City of Reno. However, “Being on mission” is a phrase that we hear through and through in Christian circles, but what does it really mean? Who are we really on mission for? Is it even possible to live “on mission” for the City of Reno, as Jesus has asked us to?
The concept of mission is similar to the idea of exercise for many Christians. We all can be in better shape. In fact, come every January millions resolve to exercise more, but by the time March approaches the exercise reality is a blurry thought of the past. We find it so hard to start. Should you run? Bike? Lift weights or join classes? Not only is it hard to start, but making exercise a lifestyle feels nearly impossible. This is exactly how we are with mission. We love mission, and see the absolute need to be on mission; however, making mission a reality and a lifestyle seems nearly impossible. Where do we start?
"God doesn’t want you to change your life; He wants you to change your intentionality. "
The Bible. The Bible says a lot about mission. Jesus specifically has two commands in which we can learn about mission. First, we’ll discuss what is often called the Great Commission “go therefore and make disciples…” (Matt 28:19) This is our mission statement. Jesus commands that we GO! Just like in the exercise example, we just need to start somewhere. So Go! We need to get off of the couch, leave our house and our comfort, and be intentional about being on mission. The second command is the Great Commandment. Jesus says, love God and love your neighbor (Mark 12:30-31). In saying this, Jesus is not solely asking us to love the two people that we are sandwiched between in our neighborhood. He is referring to proximity. Jesus is saying we are to love those whom we are already doing life with. This is whom we are asked to be missional toward. Many think missionaries are those in a third world country serving the poor for Jesus, or people that are full time staff at a church or ministry. Jesus says true Christians are those who are on mission. God doesn’t want you to change your life; He wants you to change your intentionality. Are you are missionary? How are you impacting the lives of those that you are surrounded with daily? There are three categories in our daily lives that we can find our “neighbors.”
Where you live
The first category is our actual neighbors. They are those who live right next to you in your neighborhoods. Do you know your neighbors? Have you developed relationship with those whom you pass daily from your house, apartment or dormitory? These are also the people that you run into at your local coffee shop, gas station and grocery store. As you read this list, does anyone come to mind? Once we identify who our physical neighbors are, we then must find a way to be intentional to enter into their lives and be strategic to live life with them.
Where you work
The second category is our work. They are those who we work with or are in proximity with on a consistent basis because of our job. If you are a student, this includes school. This is not only your co-workers, but those in other organizations who you interact with frequently. For example, the owners/workers of your favorite lunch spot or the weekly Fedex delivery person are frequent interactions that you have due to work or school. Are you in relationship with your co-workers or fellow students, and do you desire to be missional toward them? Do you pray for them and desire to communicate the gospel to them?
Where we play
The third category is where we play. What are your hobbies? Who do you interact with when you get a day off and want to enjoy life? Whether you enjoy outdoor activities, sports, art, music, literature or video games you interact with people. So how are you being intentional to interact with those who share the same excitement for your hobbies as you?
Now that we have identified our “neighbors” and see that the first step in mission is to be intentional with those already in our lives, please don’t hear that you need to do more to create another club or Christian gathering. God has called us to go, and to go to those who are already in our lives. Pray that God will give you His heart for them, as well as, opportunities to care for, love and share the gospel with them. Now Go!