Missional living is described as adopting the thinking, behavior, and practices of a missionary to engage people in the Christian message.
According Jesus’ statements in the Gospel according to John, every Christian has been sent by Jesus with the gospel to those in the surrounding culture for the sake of the King and His kingdom: “The Church is sent into the world to continue that which he came to do, in the power of the same Spirit, reconciling people to God.” Jesus said, “As the Father has sent Me, I am sending you.” (John 20:21)
Lesslie Newbigin writes, “No one can say: ‘Since I’m not called to be a missionary, I do not have to evangelize my friends and neighbors.’ There is no difference, in spiritual terms, between a missionary witnessing in his home town and a missionary witnessing in Katmandu, Nepal. We are all called to go—even if it is only to the next room, or the next block.”
How can you gain this perspective for your life? Being missional is not just putting a block of time into your agenda to do something for your neighbours or your community, it involves everything we do and everything we say. All of these actions should be pointing to the Savior. Here are some simple ideas:
- Pray – pray for your neighbours, your community, your country and the people that govern it. Pray also for your church family and your pastor. Years ago, I had a miscarriage and a pastor friend of mine said that he would pray for me as it was the least he could do. Then he said, “No, I will pray for you because it is the most I can do.” Here at Galcom International, we have awesome volunteers, ministry partners and supporters, and we are upheld by the people who give of their time to daily pray for this ministry.
- Give – Give of yourself, your time and your money. The Christians in the early church sold their property and possessions to give to anyone that had need. (Acts 2:45) Shouldn’t we be doing the same? The act of giving should focus on our emotions rather than our pocketbooks. Ministries that proclaim the Gospel have basic needs that must be met such as heat, hydro and paying their staff. So, in this aspect, money is needed.
- Serve – There is a group that is called “The Simple Way” (www.thesimpleway.org) whose members, seeing the number of uninhabited buildings, along with the homelessness and the poverty, have moved into the inner city of Philadelphia. You may think that this is extreme, but is it really? Isn’t this what Jesus did? Moreover, this is precisely what missionaries do as well, when they serve in a foreign land.
There is a multitude of ways you can serve your community, from making muffins for an elderly neighbour to hosting a community barbeque to donating money to a Christian ministry. There are so many hurting people in our communities and throughout the world. Everyone needs the opportunity to see God’s love in action and each Christian needs to take responsibility to see that this happens. Ephesian 6:7 says:” Serve wholeheartedly, as if you were serving the Lord, not people”. If these three attributes every day practice, we are able adding a missional perspective and purpose to our lives.