The mission is critical. We do well (very well!) to cultivate missionaries in our churches– making disciples, baptizing them, and teaching them all that Christ commanded. But the mission is temporary. It has an end for which we “groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for adoption as sons” (Romans 8:23).
The new wave of missional living is still young in American churches. Yet as most things go, the pendulum can easily swing too far one way. Today, the emphasis certainly lies in awakening the dormant missionary impulse of Christians. But are we doing so to the peril of abiding?
When the mission of the gospel is completed, will we have abiding sons and daughters of God or pumped up missionaries without a mission?
Or are abiding sons and daughters of God actually the best missionaries?
What we have learned so far from the missional movement is that the missionary life is not necessarily comprised of going to Africa to work in an orphanage. In fact, it may be an otherwise remarkably ordinary life simply lived intentionally in your present context.
What remains to be said is that abiding in God is not necessarily comprised of rigorous Bible studies, prolonged times of solitude, and a plethora of accountability groups. Rather, abiding in God may also be an otherwise remarkably ordinary life.
I am deeply convinced that the Holy Spirit has given me an ache for — and preoccupation with — the family of God ultimately to recover a life of abiding in God among his children.
And so I am embarking on a 4-part series about the robust and ordinary life of abiding in God. (To get these posts sent right to your inbox, type in your email address in the sidebar box to the right and hit “subscribe”.)
- Abiding is bearing your Father’s image
- Abiding is a drama of God’s goodness
- Abiding is enjoying your Father’s gifts
- Abiding is a renewed imagination
For the over-achievers, here are some past posts about abiding for you to get started on: