Family On Mission
This weekend at First Baptist, Matt and Margaret Reynolds challenged us to “Live Sent.” Our lives become integrated into God’s mission in Tallahassee with others who care deeply about our city. The apostles discovered in Acts 2 and in Acts 5, they could gather in two places. They met together in the temple and broke bread from house to house. As they did, the Lord added daily the number who were being saved. They became a family on mission.
Just as the apostles in the early Jerusalem learned, we are also called to gather at 108 West College Avenue on Sundays and Wednesdays and then to be the church at work, home, and on campus. This weekend we’ve focused on the movement of God from house to house. We know God is alive when we get together on Sundays and Wednesdays. Now it’s time to deploy into the community in a lifestyle on mission. As I’ve listened to Matt and our breakout leaders, I’ve picked up on seven qualities that a family on mission needs to have.
There is no one perfect project for every person. Each person must discover, practice, and try wherever she senses God’s work. Like piano lessons, practice, practice, practice. Start small, and see what happens.
Loving your neighbor involves heart, soul, mind, and strength. We don’t just share God’s love only through word and tongue, but also with action and in truth. We use all of our lives and minister to the whole person.
Just as Jesus lived out his mission in Capernaum as his home base, we must have a place from which to start. We can’t do this remotely; we must live intentionally right beside people. In his breakout session, Jeff Latimer showed how we can map the block where we live and start by working with the people who live right around us.
Most projects are going to fail at first. Margaret and Matt moved to Jordan for 30 days and then moved back to Atlanta. Not everything is going to succeed, and that’s ok. God can still use the mistakes, and that’s important. Give yourself permission to fail.
Find friends who care about the same things, and work and live together. One of the key features of the missional life is people to share it with. Whether it’s food you swap on Wednesday nights, or resources you share together, no one should have to go it alone. Matt and Margaret found another couple who cared deeply about the same apartment complex in Atlanta. They worked together with Bosnian refugees. No one has to do this alone.
Just as we love the whole person, our lives are integrated. Church doesn’t end with Sunday morning services, and neither should friendships and conversation. All of our lives are part of the mission. Sit down with the people you love the most, share your passion with them, and discover what you can do together.
Family on mission is about your extended faith family working together for the sake of the gospel. It’s not about keeping your family protected from the mission of God or being so focused on the mission that you sacrifice your family. It’s about your family sharing a mission together.
We can’t do it all, but we can do something. In order to do something, we must prioritize. One person said in a breakout session that she decided to skip a Christian Bible study on a Monday night so that she could be available to serve basketball players in a sports league on the same night. She’s being the church to an unreached group of athletes.
Where do you start?
- Share where God is working with your family of faith. Take time at home and in your Bible studies to share stories of God’s work.
- Find a home base. Jesus’ base was Capernaum; pick a place where you can live and play, and begin from there. Find a dorm or neighborhood with unreached people. Move in, and start serving. Or begin where you live right now.
- Find someone who lives near you to support you. Meet at and eat together to discuss plans and dreams. Even if they’re not in your neighborhood, ask some prayer warriors to pray for your ministry. Partner with other believers who share your passion and gifts.
As a part of the youth group and as an adult, I’ve spent hundreds of dollars on mission trips for the Lord. It trained me to do the very thing that all of us can do in our front yard. Our families can be on mission together. By doing so, we are living sent.