“The mission of God in Christ gives shape and substance to the life and work of the Church. In Christ, the Church participates in God’s mission for the transformation of creation and humanity by proclaiming to all people the good news of God’s love, offering to all people the grace of God at font and table, and calling all people to discipleship in Christ. Human beings have no higher goal in life than to glorify and enjoy God now and forever, living in covenant fellowship with God and participating in God’s mission.” (from Book of Order, Presbyterian Church USA)
I suspect when hear the word “mission” you think of nice Christians going oversees to save other people. Many older Presbyterian can recall the Women’s Mission Society or giving money to an agency for “missions.” The emphasis was (and is still) other people engaging in mission.
The paragraph above is from the opening chapter of the Book of Order, Part II of the Constitution of the Presbyterian Church (USA). This sets the foundation for everything else that is contained in a book that many groan about or ignore (except when a policy is set with which there is disagreement). The operating principles (or core values) of being a Presbyterian Christian lie in the confession that the Church is God’s mission.
YOU are God’s mission in everything you say and do.
Think about that. Each member or friend of the Calvin church is part of God’s mission. With each act of caring, you live out God’s mission. In each word of comfort, you live out God’s mission. By your sharing joy, you live out God’s mission.
Mission isn’t something someone else does or is paid to do. YOU are God’s mission in everything you say and do. That’s how valued you are to God.
Over the course of the next month or two, I’ll lead a “mission study” which will be instrumental in your search for a new Pastor. This study should yield information about the community in which Calvin church worships and prays, information that is meant to help you discern how you will be God’s mission to your community. The pastoral search will include asking candidates for the position how they will equip you to be that holy mission.
Join me on Tuesday, May 22nd at 7:00 pm for the first of what I’m calling “4th Tuesdays with Doug.” We’ll spend time together looking at the interim work the congregation will be involved in. Each month I’ll focus on a specific task. In May, I’ll talk about the mission study. And who knows… there may be some tasty goodies there, too.