Our 5th Habit in BELLS is “Sent.”
To become highly missional people we need to come to understand being sent as God’s messengers in the world and make that a part of our everyday life. We are Sent to demonstrate the Universal Reign of God in Christ. Yes, I think all those caps are important. We do so in four ways.
First, we engage in reconciliation. This is one of the most basic aspects of Christianity, that through the work of Christ God reconciles humanity and creation to himself. Be aware of all the times you have alerted others, by word or deed, to the reconciling aspect of God’s Kingdom. Perhaps this was an act of mediation between coworkers or friends, perhaps you took the effort to begin the process of reconciliation with another, perhaps you pointed out the need for reconciliation on a larger scale in our society. The more you become aware of it in your life, the more you will practice it.
Second, we support the cause of Justice. Christianity have long been the foundation for Justice movements in the West. Greats like John Wesley, Charles Spurgeon, and Charles Finney all led campaigns for the betterment of society. Prison reform, labor reform, and the abolition of slavery were all begun in churches. Today Christian leaders continue to engage in antipoverty, antiwar, environmental, and immigration causes. When we stand against the work of Justice we stand against the work of Christ. While these issues seem larger than any individual, we can be advocates for Justice with our voices, with our funds, and with our actions to support those in need of Justice. These issues can often be divisive in our society, but I encourage you to apply “hunger and thirst for righteousness” that Jesus speaks of to all aspects of your life.
Third, we promote beauty. Beauty is the one thing that most often causes people to experience God, whether in nature or art. Beauty is an expression of God’s Reign. We should commit ourselves both to creating beautiful music, art, craft, and food and to inviting others to join us. Think about how you see God in beauty and try fashioning expressions of beauty yourself.
Finally, we seek Wholeness. When asked if he was the one that they sought, meaning the messiah, Jesus replied to John’s Disciples:
Go back and report to John what you have seen and heard: The blind receive sight, the lame walk, those who have leprosy are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, and the good news is proclaimed to the poor. Luke 7:22
The entire work of Christ is to create wholeness in humanity. It is not just a spiritual thing. Christ’s work encompasses all of our needs. From the most basic of health and food and shelter to emotional and spiritual needs as well. Thus, our work does also. Note how you see God creating wholeness and how you participate in the process.
For these things I want you to create a Journal. This is about being deliberate. Journaling can help you to process events, see the pattern in God’s work, keep a record of your insights, help you ask important questions, and most of all help you to identify yourself differently. That last one is our goal. We want to be missional people. Journaling will help you become aware of how you are already engaging in mission and how you can improve.
To help you out here are some additional links on Journaling: