Sunday in Review // Mission

Like most words, the word mission can be interpreted many ways.  Mission can be a thing, it can be a place, it can be an activity, or it can be a statement.

Jesus was asked by a lawyer one day, “What is the greatest commandment?”  Jesus replied by saying, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.  This is the first and great commandment.  The second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself” (Matthew 22:37-39).

This commandment, or creed as Scot McKnight would call it, is the great challenge for the Christ follower and the church.  

If we look at this creed through the lens of mission, love God and love your neighbor has “who” in mind rather than “what.”  So maybe when we think of mission we should think more of who than of what.  Who we are on mission to should be of greater concern than what we are doing.  Put another way, what you do means much less than who you love.  

Given that distinction, should I pray, “Lord, what would you have me do?” Or should I pray, “Lord, who would you have me love?”  Most likely both questions are good and right.  However, I think the latter gets to the heart of the creed.

Love God and love your neighbor.

Yet when we talk about mission, what we do always seems to come into question.  Should mission be all of life or should it be a compartment of life?  Is mission something I do a few weeks out of the summer or should it be a 365-day way of life?

I believe we find in scripture that all of life is mission.  Mission has an “as you are going” feel to it.  I believe Jesus, with his very life, showed us how to live.  Jesus lived out the creed, love God and love your neighbor.  So what do we see Jesus doing as he walked the earth?  Jesus was with people, he discipled, he walked, he ate, he partied, he slept, he prayed, and he seemed to enjoy it all.  In other words, Jesus lived everyday life with the mission of loving the Father and loving his neighbor.  

Olympia City Church, I hope you will see all of life as mission.  I pray that you will take time and make space to begin asking God, “Who would you have me love?”  Then in all seriousness begin praying, “Father, help me to live everyday life with gospel intentionality.”  I pray this will be a reality for you, your family, and your CITYgroup.

– Jonathan Johnson