Since 2009 we have been on an intentional journey to learn what Jesus desires His Church to be. In the process we have faced a need for change in leadership, language, and lifestyle. Leadership, because we had to embrace the walk of service to the Bride instead of entertaining Her; Language, becuase words carry meaning from history, so that new direction needs new dialogue; and Lifestyle because in the end our message is spoken by what we do – each of us, every moment of every day. We noticed that lifestyle is mostly guided by deeper beliefs, not conscious choice – So in our walk as disciples we have dug deeper in our closest relationships to let the Holy Spirit work on our hearts.
When we got to the challenge of staying engaged with our community outside of our Fellowship, we found that the connections God creates day to day are truly divine appointments, and that living “missionally” has nothing to do with programs. We are being read by others constantly. We are seeing right now the result of what dozens of others were reading in the life of a young man named Nick who let others know about his love for Jesus. When his life reached the finish line before anyone expected, his friends were affected. They were drawn to, and for some, drawn back to, following the Wild Messiah. How do we allow Jesus to be preached by our lives so that when we speak, and work, and “serve”, and hang out at home, the voice of God is sensed again saying, “This is My Son…”? (Matt. 3:17, Luke 3:22, 9:35) I remember in all of this that it was God who did Pentecost; it was God who gave Steven the grace to forgive people as they were stoning him. These were the points at which the true God was revealed in unplanned events (at least by people). We are all along for the ride. It’s how we ride that proves the presence of Jesus.
We have a sign up in our house that says, “Live well ~ Laugh Often ~ Love much”. I think I like it because it describes what I think of when I read Jesus’ words, “I have come that you may life, and have it to the full.” If He came to give us this, then living this way is good way to “preach” His presence. Then all that is left to do is tell others where it come from.