by Jack Taylor
It seems obvious doesn’t it? When you are driving at night you put on your headlights? Why? So you can see where you’re going.
Mission is about knowing where you are going and vision is about seeing where you are going.
At Faith, our mission and vision statements are like the headlights on our car. We say we are making disciples of Christ from all nations. Engaging with Jesus, we bring truth, grace and love to all those around us. We say this because Jesus, in Matthew 28:18-20 told us “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” (NIV)
This short passage provides our headlights.
We see that there is only one authority who gives us direction. All authority belongs to the risen and living one, to Jesus.
We see that his direction is clear. As we are going about our everyday life we are to make disciples of all nations. This isn’t a task we accomplish individually but it’s a task we participate in with others from the church. We can’t make disciples of everyone, but we should be making disciples of someone without prejudice as to what nation they come from.
The words “baptize them” literally mean “to immerse them” in water and so when someone confirms that by grace God has brought them into a right relationship with God through the forgiveness of sins won by the shed blood of Christ on the cross; that they desire to follow Jesus as revealed in the Scripture; that they desire to join with his people in a community of faith, hope and love – then we celebrate their new life in an immersion during one of our services where all can witness God’s goodness.
We also see that a disciple is a lifelong learner who must be taught to obey everything Jesus commands. In humility, we recognize that we are all life-long learners in a relationship where we are teaching and growing at the same time. We recognize that our life as part of a faith community now impacts others and we are careful to protect the values and truths Jesus teaches us.
We see that Jesus promises to always be with us. This gives us great confidence and hope in our gatherings, in our small groups, in our mentoring. We don’t walk alone.
We see finally that this age will end and therefore our time for making disciples is limited. We ask God for divine appointments and for significant conversations with those he brings into our social circle and then we alertly watch, pray and share.
One day, we will stand with countless others from every tribe and tongue and nation around the throne of Jesus to celebrate his victory over death and sin. Until then, we want a taste of heaven by making disciples of Christ from all nations who God brings our way.
Who has God placed in your social circle so that you can learn with? What steps in relationship building are you taking so that trust is being established? When is the last time you shared your own testimony of God’s grace in your life?
Is this mission and vision of discipleship clear for you?
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