We often associate missions and outreach as a separate area of our Christian lives and not something that is holistic and all-encompassing. We think to ourselves that we will go on mission if the church announces a mission trip somewhere, or even more, we will do outreach in our community if the church puts an outreach day together. Although mission trips and outreach days are not in themselves bad and they should happen, we should not be dependent on them in order to live on mission.
The idea of living on mission does not come natural for us, especially in our fast-paced world. We are all extremely busy, but the encouraging thing about this is that living a missional life can and should happen naturally for Christians through every avenue of our lives. Although we should take advantage of and maximize outreach opportunities with our local church and other Christians, we can also take advantage of each day of life that we are given. Jesus commands us to GO! We can go in the workplace, classroom, around family members, walking down the street, shopping, and anything and everything else! A life on mission may come more natural for some than others because of specific passions or personalities, but all Christians should strive to see through the lens of Jesus as they go about their daily lives.
GO Every Day
In Matthew 9:35-38, Jesus teaches on the reality that needs are everywhere around us. Over and over again, Jesus had compassion for people, where he was burdened for them, particularly those who did not know him. Scripture refers to them as people “like sheep without a shepherd.” He then commands his disciples with something that was beyond themselves and their own needs. He says, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few; therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest” (Matthew 9:37-38). Wow! What a command! Jesus recognizes and is fully aware that the needs are great. Because the needs are great, Christians are to GO and meet those needs!
This is meant to be the model of the church. I’m reminded in Acts 4, where Luke briefly describes a picture of the early church: “There was not a needy person among them, for as many as were owners of lands or houses sold them and brought the proceeds of what was sold and laid it at the apostles’ feet, and it was distributed as each had need” (Acts 3:34-35). Can you imagine a church like this? A church where everyone embraces the needs, and knows that if anyone is called to go meet these needs of the world, both spiritual and physical, it’s Christians. If every Christian began to live with this perspective, this world would radically change!
GO with Vintage Church
For some of us, this may seem overwhelming, and in a sense, it is. The great thing about following Jesus though, is that it’s never too late to take a step forward in the right direction. We have all failed in this area at some point, but Jesus is calling us to get back up and GO together!
On Saturday, March 24th, Vintage Church is having their first ServeNOLA Day of 2018. We are partnering with six other organizations and ministries in our city that are doing amazing things. The six are: Light of Hope, Second Harvest Food Bank, Baptist Community Health Services, Habitat for Humanity, Baptist Friendship House and Ronald McDonald House. Each of these opportunities are unique and cater to different needs. We will split into groups, serve at various locations that morning, and rally back at Vintage for lunch and a time of reflection, praise, and celebration. This year, Vintage is having at least four church-wide outreach days. We want outreach not to be something we just do, but who we are! These ServeNOLA days are meant to give us unity as a church, inspiration to live on mission every day, and to see people CHANGED by the gospel of Jesus.
I challenge and encourage you to pray about which opportunity the Lord wants you to serve with, and register and sign up. Each site can take a different amount of people. Sign up opportunities are available on Sundays at Vintage Church, or online at servenola.com. You can also learn more about each ministry partnership on this website too. Stay posted for more details and information!
Mark your calendars for March 24th! We can’t wait to serve our city together and be a part of what Jesus is going to do!