MARK 16:15-16: “And He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature. He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned.” NKJV
OBSERVATION: “Build it and they will come.” This is a famous line from the movie “Field of Dreams.” And, unfortunately, it has become the mission of the church in our day.
As a pastor I am guilty of buying into this dream. When I went to school the Church Growth Movement was in its beginning days. I bought all the books, and was convinced that if I simply applied the principles I had learned, that our church would soon be growing by leaps and bounds. We did experience some growth, but my inward focus on the church led me down the wrong path.
Now, we live in a post-Christian world. When I was young, when someone faced a crisis in their life, they would turn to the Bible and to the church. Now, this is the last place people turn. In fact, they do not even consider this as an option. Yet, as the church, we still focus on our services, our buildings, our support ministries, in an effort to make our churches the best we can. And, all the while we miss why we are here.
WE ARE HERE TO GO!
How foolish would a missions movement be, that simply sent someone to an unchurched people group, built a building, installed a killer video and sound system, set up some comfy chairs, put a lighted sign on the door, and waited for people to come in? Why would anyone who sees the church as irrelavant, and even an intrusion, come in?
WE ARE CALLED TO GO!
We have forgotten that all of God’s people are called to the mission field. Our churches are not resorts for the saved. They are to be mission outposts to reach the lost. And, we don’t have a church service to attract the lost. We gather together in church to worship the Lord, encourage one another in the faith, and be commissioned to go out and proclaim the Gospel.
THE PROBLEM IS – WE ARE NOT GOING!
Most of us never go out. We go to church. We go to work. We come home. We watch TV. And, then we start the cycle all over again. We really have no personal or corporate strategy to reach out to the lost. When was the last time I shared the gospel with someone that I did not know? When was the last time I purposely engaged in an activity whose sole purpose was to reach the lost?
I know of wonderful family who are missionaries in Myanmar. They, and their four children, are working daily to find ways to bring the gospel to the lost in their new culture. They do not simply hold a church service on Sunday mornings. They go into the community with acts of service to connect with Christ’s love. And, in every connection, they are prepared to share the gospel!
This is really what the church should be about. The church should be a mobile hospital. The church should be a service community on wheels. The church should be going to where people are hurting and in need. The people will not come to the church. These days have long since passed. We must realize that if we are going to fulfill our calling as the church,
WE ARE CALLED TO GO!
I need to hear these words. God is calling me to leave my comfort zone and go into the mission field of life. I do not need to go to a foreign country to fulfill this call. I simply need to be brave enough to go outside of the door of my own home and out of the door of my church. I need to leave my recliner, lay down my remote control, and take up my cross and follow Jesus!
I AM CALLED TO GO!
Lord, keep stirring my heart. Help me to move from my comfort and complacency and into Your mission field. Give me grace to be bold and unashamed of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Help me to let my light shine.
In Jesus Name!