January 10, 2013

Living Missionally [Part 1]

Living Missionally.
What does this mean?
What does this tangibly look like?
How do I put this into motion in my life?

As we are walking down a path of transition at our church from a small group mentality to encouraging, fostering, and leading missional communities, we do a lot of talking about "living missionally". What we mean by this is pretty simple, yet requires a complete change in the way we look at life. As Christ-followers, every day we wake up we are on mission. Our neighborhood, our workplace, our kids ball team or boy scout troop, our classroom or gym, they are all places where the Lord has given us opportunity to get to know, reach, and love people around us for the sake of the Gospel. People who are lost, hopeless, weary, and desperate to know that there is a God who not only created them, but loves them and has already redeemed them. ALL of this begins by simply looking around and getting to know people. Allow me to give you an example.

Several weeks ago before Christmas, Morgan and I wanted to do something to not only try to get to know our neighbors better, but to give many of them an opportunity to meet each other. We wanted to invite them into our home and essentially throw a party where they would all feel comfortable and welcome. So we planned a Dessert Drop. Here's what we did.

We made invitations, personally delivered them to everyone on our street, and prayed that the Lord would stir many of their hearts to come and join us. Our friends Dan & Ellen (who are in our missional community) not only helped us make some of the desserts, they came that night as well. When 6:30 arrived, I'm not gonna lie; we were pretty scared that no one was going to show up. But then the doorbell rang. And people kept coming. Of the 15 homes on our street, we had 7 of them represented there that night. We met one couple that has lived on the street longer than we have, but we had never taken the time to reach out to. And Dan connected with him because they have very similar jobs. There were great connections and conversations going on in our kitchen, dining room, and living room. We have neighbors now waving at each other who didn't even know each other a month ago. And all we really did was throw a party. Now, we are praying the Lord continues to give us opportunities to love them, serve them, and ultimately share our story with them, that Jesus Christ has completely changed our lives!

I feel I need to fully disclose that I did not make the dessert shown above.
In fact, I didn't make any of the desserts. We wanted our neighbors to actually enjoy the food, not get sick over it.

This is one incredibly simple way to start living missionally.
Are there other ideas you've tried?
How could you start living missionally today?

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