Last night after lamenting and sharing my frustration with my husband about the church at large, my heart was tested. I expressed my discontent and boredom I was feeling with the church. Somewhere along the journey I was asking myself when did this life become so routine? Where was the adventure? The evangelist in me was becoming lost in church culture.
One of my greatest passions over the years had become sharing with others how to live missionally; not just overseas but in their daily lives. Yet, I realized that I was becoming unfulfilled due to the fact that I wasn’t living as missionally as I was in times past. Being “churched” it’s easy to find yourself ONLY doing life with other believers. And quite frankly, just doing life with other believers gets quite boring. Yes we are to fellowship with the saints, but we are also to sit with the sinner for the sake of winning them to the gospel. We can’t truly grow the body of Christ if we consistently surround ourselves with each other and become a social club.
1 Corinthians 9:19-23 (ESV)
19 For though I am free from all, I have made myself a servant to all, that I might win more of them. 20 To the Jews I became as a Jew, in order to win Jews. To those under the law I became as one under the law (though not being myself under the law) that I might win those under the law. 21 To those outside the law I became as one outside the law (not being outside the law of God but under the law of Christ) that I might win those outside the law.22 To the weak I became weak, that I might win the weak. I have become all things to all people, that by all means I might save some.23 I do it all for the sake of the gospel, that I may share with them in its blessings.
We have the tendency as the body of Christ to focus inwardly instead of outwardly where people need to know Jesus… So after a passionate discussion with my husband we hear a knock on the door. It just happened to be one of our neighbors. She’s an elderly woman, with a very colorful personality to say the least who had gotten nasty with me for no reason in December. I didn’t get upset because I realized she mentally had some challenges. But here she was at our front door today, apologizing and thanking me for not going off on her. (Like others have done to her in the neighborhood) So here, at our doorstep we had the opportunity to live On Mission, and practice what we preach, or simply say, “Thank you” and slam the door. By God’s grace, I passed the test and made it my business to love on this woman by having a conversation with her, praying with her and speaking words of encouragement into her life. Jeff and I discussed afterwards how we knew it was a test of our hearts because we were just sharing how we desired to live “On Mission” even more with our lives. In the coming weeks I’ll be sharing ways on how we can implement this practically. Living on mission is more than just going to give a sandwich to a homeless person. It’s more than applying to go on a short-term missions trip. It’s more than just checking off your Christian boxes by going to an outreach service once a month. As Jen Hatmaker put it in her book “Interrupted” it, means you get to skip all the church-speak and level with people authentically. This is done through meeting people where they are, and intentionally developing relationships. It may take you out of your comfort zone, and it will also require a sacrifice from your time, but its needed. We all need to get out of our comfort zones more for the sake of the gospel. Just turn on the news! Ok, don’t turn on the news because it’s depressing. Believers, have the opportunity to be the light like never before to a world that’s confused and hurting. This is our time to step off social media and actually talk to people in person. I look forward to sharing with you in the coming weeks about living “On Mission” and our personal journey to reviving that in our own home and neighborhood. This is truly what makes Christianity an adventure.
Refocused and Back to Living on Mission,
Jennifer Lucy Tyler