Are You Missional?

In the book Live Sent: You Are a LetterJason Dukes lays out 10 questions to help Christians discern whether or not they are operating with a missional mindset. I’ve adapted and explained them below. Challenging words!

1. When you speak of church, what prepositions do you use?

Do you focus on church as a place or event more than a people who are sent?

2. When you think of missions, do you think of a mission trip to a distant city and a service project in your own community or do you think about daily life among your family, neighbors, and coworkers?

The answer should be both. Living sent means you are a missionary in your everyday encounters.

3. What is your common declaration about lost people around you? “Can you believe the way those people act?” OR “When can you come over for dinner?”

Hospitality is a key to living sent.

4. Is my tendency to disengage from culture and retreat into safer, more Christian environments? Or is it to engage culture even amidst discomfort and danger?

We must be among lost people in order to be an effective witness.

5. When you hear “make disciples,” do you think of a classroom or your relationships?

We should be equipped to disciple people in the daily routine of life, not just the classroom.

6. Do you spend a lot of time wondering whether you should quit your job to surrender to ministry? Or do you simply live to minister to anyone and everyone where you are currently?

Pastoral ministry is vitally important, but too many Christians are unaware that they too are involved in ministry to the people around them.

7. When you think of a friend who needs help, do you think, “I need to get him to see the pastor” OR “I wonder what I can do to help”?

Pastors are to equip God’s people to do the work of the ministry, not be the only ones who minister and witness to the lost.

8. When you think of heaven, do you think “kingdom come” or “kingdom is here”?

As people who believe the kingdom is both now and not yet, we ought to live as people who are the “presence of the future.”

9. Do you think godliness is measured with a mirror or within community?

Introspection (the mirror) is not the only way we become holy before the world. Jesus said people would see our fruit through our love for and life with other believers. “An intimate, shared life with God is most clearly demonstrated in intimate, shared life with one another.”

10. Do you have a lost friend who would actually introduce you as his or her friend?

If we are to live sent the way the sent One intended, then we must have genuine friendship with the lost too.

 

 


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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Trevin Wax

Trevin Wax

My name is Trevin Wax. I am a follower of Jesus Christ. My wife is Corina, and we have two children: Timothy (7) and Julia (3). Currently, I serve the church by working at LifeWay Christian Resources as managing editor of The Gospel Project, a gospel-centered small group curriculum for all ages that focuses on the grand narrative of Scripture. I have been blogging regularly at Kingdom People since October 2006. I frequently contribute articles to other publications, such as Christianity Today. I also enjoy traveling and speaking at different churches and conferences. My first book, Holy Subversion: Allegiance to Christ in an Age of Rivals, was published by Crossway Books in January 2010. (Click here for excerpts and more information.) My second book, Counterfeit Gospels: Rediscovering the Good News in a World of False Hope(Moody Publishers) was released in April 2011.

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comment_post_ID); ?> I am a senior citizen who has lived in many areas of the US, the farthest south being Virginia DC area. There are several church plants in the area--some failed, some doing well. One of the sadist failures was a plant in NW Washington near a large Presbyterian Church (I had been an elder in the church, so I knew the area) where changes in church doctrine was driving many away from the PCUSA churches. There were many mature Christians who lived in the area who were very willing to participate and give generously to the church. Its failure was a loss. The pastor and his wife lived in a VA suburb, wanted something that would appeal to their tastes, which included "praise music". There was a professional piano teacher and several people who had sung in choirs in the area. Their suggestions were completely ignored. Forget that there was joyous participation in singing hymns and silence by many for the praise music. The experienced church leaders that were attending were expected to seek the wisdom of the pastor who did not live in the area rather than have any role in leadership. There is another church plant in Northern Virginia that seems to be going the same way. My take: the pastors should get past their high-school and college days culture and get to know and appreciate the people of the community. Do not try to reproduce Intervarsity or Campus Crusade. Hymns are not a sin and "uneducated" (never graduated from college) should not be ignored as uninformed or stupid. People who have served in and/or live in the area are needed in leadership and not just to serve coffee and give. We all need to pray together and serve God in the community in which there is to be a plant. Glenna Hendricks
 
— Glenna Hendricks
 
comment_post_ID); ?> I like it Mac and do agree with your opinions on the matter. Thanks much
 
— winston
 
comment_post_ID); ?> In this era, we have the opportunity of professional church staff today who utilize their gifting to shape the image and atmosphere of the church organization. But the 100% real impact on the church visitors is genuine evidence of changed lives by the gospel and the active growing discipleship (just as it was in the first century church). One demonstration is financially rich believers ministering equally together with poor believers (how odd, and incredibly miraculous; all humble and bow at the foot of the cross.). It is the awesome contrast of church members vocations, race, gender, age, maturity, gifting, humility that demonstrates to visitors "there is a Spirit in the place". That first-time guest list of 10 are "physical excuses", not spiritual excuses. Those don't tell the story. The condition of facilities and publicly greeting people have zero to do with it. The power of God in and through believers lives dedicated to impact other people with their relationship bridge-building of acceptance of the lost around them. Empowered believers are infectious, loving, helpful, giving, self-less, dynamic, compelling, bold, Christ-filled. As I have been in many church settings domestically and internationally, the facilities can be poor, and yet the fellowship can still be rich. We need to operate with first church humility. People come to Christ on His terms, not on our human abilities of hospitality. A huge catastrophe in a community, disaster relief brings lots of people into churches – many come to the church in those terrible conditions no matter the physical condition of the local church. Off the condition of facility, and onto the condition of God's people (living stones).... and everything else will grow.... and the other physical issues will be corrected by the staff.
 
— Russ Wright
 

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