Missions in the Context of Community
"Of this church I was made a minister according to the stewardship from God bestowed on me for your benefit, so that I might fully carry out the preaching of the word of God, that is, the mystery which has been hidden from the past ages and generations, but has now been manifested to His saints, to whom God willed to make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory." Colossians 1:25-27
Over the past three weeks, I have been laying out a vision for the particular goals of our community groups. I have used the text from Colossians to identify those traits we hold in common as we do life together. Week 1 was devoted to the practice of sanctification. Healthy growth in the believers life is essential. Together we are setting the course of faith, begging God to grow us into His likeness! I pray that ours is a culture filled with the expectation of healthy spiritual growth. Paul is adamant throughout his letters that our sanctification signifies our true relationship with Christ. Week 2 of this series, I discussed the importance of Mutual Care. The Bible is filled with “one another” passages that identify the true expression of our relationships. The church is characterized by our familial connections. We relate to one another with true compassion as family members in the house of God. Last week I went a step further and identified the importance of fellowship. The important characteristic is more than mutual care, it is the realization that Christ is the one we hold too, and is the essences of our relationships.
This week, our focus is the expression of missions lived out within the context of community. How do we do missions in our community groups? A biblical understanding of missions is a special calling to share the gospel to a specific people group that has not had the opportunity to hear the message of salvation through Christ. Paul stated in Colossians chapter 1 that he had the call to take the gospel to the Gentiles. In its truest expression, missions often includes learning a new language and culture to overcome barriers for the purpose of evangelism.
Obviously, as a church, we must pray, send out, and support those called to take the gospel to a people who live daily without the hope of Christ. This is the model we see identified in the life of Paul expressed to the church at Colossae. A healthy church incorporates the celebration of this practice into the regular gathering of the entire congregation as well as the weekly meetings of members who gather to study scripture. In addition, we also believe God has intentionally placed us in the heart of Goose Creek for a reason. We have a conviction that the church must be actively going into the community with the gospel, meeting needs and making disciples. Our focus in local missions is community involvement with gospel intentionality. The love of Christ that compels us to come alongside the needs of the people in our city and neighborhoods. Through both words and deeds we seek to display Christ's love so that others might know Him.
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Our Pastor writes most of the blog posts we publish, however, occasionally some of our other church leadership (some staff, some volunteer) who also contribute to the New Life blog.