Whew! Though some posters and wall hangings still remain, the formal missions month is over. It has been mentioned to me a couple of times that there has never been such a focus on mission at Christ Church. It truly was something to behold and difficult to walk away from unchanged.
We don’t truly walk away though, do we? Rather than walking away we walk into this mission that the Father inaugurated, Jesus died for, and the Spirit continues to fan into flame. We walk into mission; in our neighborhoods, at the grocery store, in our schools, our families, churches and around the world. Everywhere we go we see the need for the welcoming, healing, liberating, stain-removing Gospel!
As our missions conference was going on, we have been reminded by events in our own state how terribly broken the world we live in is, both in the hearts of individuals and in the institutions that they run. We have been reminded that we are surrounded by hurting sisters and brothers, many of them victims with very few places to call “safe”. This is our mission: to extend the welcoming balm of the gospel to these hurting. To invite those who might not be sharing the sweet fellowship of Jesus into our church, our homes, our lives.
So how do we, a disparate group of ragtag individuals carry out this mission? You know the same thing could have been asked about the disciples who gathered with Jesus in the upper room, the same ones he called to carry out His mission. Judas would betray. Peter would deny. Philip and Thomas were confused. And all would scatter. And yet … These were the ones through whom the Lord would build his church.
This Sunday we will find ourselves with these disciples listening to the words of Jesus in what is known as the Upper Room discourse. We will begin with the first 20 verses of John 13. Like the disciples, we are an imperfect community to be sure. But as we walk with our Savior and allow him to minister to us, we find that he will use us nonetheless.