Friday, May 8, 2009

...and that's why we're a mission

It's hard being a mission director after you've been the pastor of a church for a long time. You just see things so different. You see the church different. You see ministry different. When I was a pastor I used to think the parachurch guys (ministries like ours and others) were kinda bad. I thought that they took away from the church more than they gave back, especially in resources (people who volunteer and the money they donate). I always thought, "Hey, give me the money you're giving them and the hours of volunteerism that you give them and we'll do what they do."

But the truth is, we didn't.

And that's why we need mission houses, ...and that's why we're a mission.

It's hard for the local church to "leave the ninety nine... and go after the one until he finds it". After all, if you don't take care of the ninety nine, whose gonna pay the bills? ... and that's why we're a mission.

It's hard for the local church to honestly, fervently and constantly reach out to those who might take money out of the plate instead of put money in it, who are more of a liability than an asset... and that's why we're a mission.

It's hard for a church (see budget's, including the verry generous churches I pastored) to do missions in their own community. Most of us give to missions (pay someone else to do missions) or do missions projects (go somewhere else to help some other country or town) but it's hard to live a missions lifestyle... and that's why we're a mission.

Someone asked me if we'd ever become a church. I said, "Unless we stay a mission, we won't be on mission." ...and that's why we're a mission.

I've asked many a pastor friend to look at their programs for a given year and see how many volunteer hours they alloted in ministry to the neighborhood and not for their people. Honest guys (and they most are) say, "not many". We didn't at our church. Sunday School... for us. Home groups... for us. Preaching... for us. Good music... for us. Youth group... for our youth. AWANA... for our kids, etc., etc. etc. I know what you're thinkin'... but it's for them too. Be honest, how many of "them" are there? Not pickin', just sayin'... that's why we're a mission.

Maybe someday they can be the same, maybe someday the outsiders won't feel that way at our churches, maybe someday we will spend as much on them as we do on us, maybe someday we will spend as much time in their neighborhoods as we do at our building. But until then...

We're a mission.


2 - read/write comments:

Bubba McQueen said...

Well said. This is the origin behind my family "waking up" to being "outward" focused rather than comfortably focused inward...and our lives have been changed!

Bobby Roach said...

And we'll always be a mission on a mission!!!!

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