I’ve decided to do my personal Bible reading in The Message at least for 2006 if not indefinitely to further jar my senses from what I think I know about God. Today, I was reading in Mark 6 where Jesus sent out the Twelve in pairs. The passage really challenged me that our calling to be on Mission with Jesus is the same.
Missional is a buzz word that you often see affiliated with Emerging Christianity. The three passions of EC that attract me the most are: spiritual formation, community formation, and missional action. I think Jesus’ commission of the Twelve really breaks down the missional component for me. I love the simplicity of Jesus’ plan. Listen to His instructions:
“Don’t think you need a lot of extra equipment for this. You are the equipment. No special appeals for funds. Keep it simple. And no luxury inns. Get a modest place and be content there until you leave. If you’re not welcomed, not listened to, quietly withdraw. Don’t make a scene. Shrug your shoulders and be on your way.”
That so describes the type of relational evangelism and community formation that I believe we are called to fulfill. No extra equipment, no fundraisers, no gimmicks, no luxury, no sales pitch, etc. Just be the you God made you to be. Be content. Be humble.
Verse 12 really describes our calling: “Then they were on the road. They preached with joyful urgency that life can be radically different.” We are definitely on a journey without a particular destination in sight, other than to follow our Guide. The simplest description of our task is to live and preach “with joyful urgency that life can be radically different.” That’s it. We’re not pushing a denomination or a religion, no list of rules, just hope. There is a another Way, a better Way, to live.
I love that in the wake of their journey they left lives touched by the grace of God. “They sent demons packing; they brought wellness to the sick, anointing their bodies, healing their spirits.” That is such a beautiful description of the end product of living on mission with Jesus and following His lead. Darkness is dispersed and lives are made whole, not the least of which are our own.
I hope and pray that we may never assume to be more than we are and that we hold out hope to the world that life can be radically different. We have no greater proof than the difference He makes in our lives.