As the Missions Committee met the other day, I was vexed by the age-old question of what is ‘outreach,’ what is an ‘event,’ what is a ‘mission,’ and what is a ‘ministry’? These terms are frequently used interchangeably. I will confess to still not having clarity on the issue. However, in practical terms, I, personally, think it doesn’t matter what we label them as long as the purpose behind them is the Great Commission and the Great Commandment.
As we are going about our daily church and community business, are we loving God with all our heart, soul, strength and mind? Are we loving others as ourselves? And are we in the process of making disciples by loving, encouraging and empowering those in our path to experience faith and life in Jesus Christ? That is the essence of Christian life, and as we serve God and others, we learn to be more like Christ.
I considered our church’s calendar and realized that truly, everything we do fulfills the Great Commission and Commandment. Our Small Groups, Bible Studies and Confirmation Classes keep us focused on God and His word and our own spiritual growth. Our two Sunday Services and Sunday School provide us an opportunity to worship God together and build our faith by increasing our knowledge of God’s Word and its principles. The Praise Band, Choir and Handbell Choir allow us to connect with and magnify God with music.
King’s Café, entertainers and various potlucks and lunches allow for valuable fellowship time where we can check in with one another and grow our relationships deeper. It gives us an opportunity to love one another with food and encouragement.
Our Preschool, Basketball Program, Easter Egg Hunt, 4th of July Picnic, Yard Sales, Trunk or Treat, and Holiday House Bazaar, Vacation Bible School and more give us the opportunity to invite others on to our campus to experience our loving atmosphere and build connections that can lead to opportunities to share Christ and invitations to visit on Sunday. They also allow us to plant the message of Christ’s love in the younger generations.
Our Food Bank, Mission Trips, Advent Missions, Love Boxes, Care Ministry and more allow us to actually demonstrate God’s love in action by providing food, assistance, repairs, financial aid, gifts and comfort to those in need. These are very real ways to be the hands and feet of Jesus, by personally impacting someone’s life.
Even in the relative peace and security of the Hereford Zone, we are going out in the world, loving, befriending, comforting and inviting people to experience faith and life in Christ. As we are going, we become better disciples ourselves even as we are making new disciples. So shine the light of Jesus and brighten the corner that you are in. Bloom where you are planted, and know that wherever you are, God put you there, it’s your mission field and you can accomplish His purpose for you there.
The GREAT COMMISSION + the GREAT COMMANDMENT = a GREAT CHURCH!
Movin’ right along,
To find out more about my awesome church: www.herefordumc.com