What does it mean to Live on Mission?
To Live on mission is simply to live your life with a conscious intention of sharing the Gospel with those around you. If you're like many Christians, sharing the Gospel with your neighbors feels as impossible as climbing Mount Everest. I think much of that impossibility comes from a misunderstanding of what it means to share the gospel. When Jesus commanded us to "love [our] neighbors" He was describing a lot more than sharing a pamphlet and a salvation prayer. He was talking about spiritual and physical acts of love that are motivated by the same love we've received in Christ.
Jesus knows your neighbors
Gospel sharing is so much about knowing who you're sharing with. In John 4, when Jesus talks to the Samaritan woman, he lets the woman know that he truly knows her. In fact the scripture says she told everyone "come and see the man who told me everything I ever did." Jesus knew everything about her. Of course we're not Jesus. It takes time and effort for us to know our neighbors.
1. Meet your Neighbors
Start with a piece of paper and write down the names of your immediate neighbors. Great! Can you write down the names of their neighbors too? If you're unsure of any of the names, make it a point to get their names. *Pro Tip* You can get their names by knocking on their door and asking them? Just stop and think about how much better of a neighbor you can be once you know who your neighbors are. You could pray for them by name, you could say hi to them by name, you'll know where to find them if their mail accidentally comes to you... the list goes on. (Check this out for more help. 5 easy ways to meet your neighbors) Awesome! Now you know them!
2. Serve Them
Being served feels really good. Depending on who you are, where your life happens, you may or may not experience service on a regular basis. Regardless, Jesus himself modeled the perfect servant. In fact, in Mark 10:45, Jesus tells us that He came to serve. Think what it could be like if you took on this attitude toward your neighbor and began serving them.
Before your mind runs too far, I'm not talking about offering to clip their toe nails for them or something weird like that. Serve them by inviting them over for coffee or a meal. Serve your neighbor by cutting their lawn. Get creative! I'm sure your ideas are better than mine.
3. Pray for Them
If you were to pick one of these 3 things steps to do in your desire to reach your neighbors, pick prayer. Prayer helps to move us away from self dependance to God dependence. Dan Hayes describes it well.
"I need to listen to Him, and I desperately need to talk to Him. Where and how is all this done? In prayer."
It helps us remember that while God desires to use us, it's ultimately Him who touches our neighbors. If you're like me, I am flat scared to open my mouth and talk to people I don't know. I could give you a hundred reasons why I'm scared. But ultimately those reasons are mostly about me. When I shift and see God as the one doing the work and God as the one they are experiencing, suddenly the burden is a bit lighter. Ephesians 3:14 gives a great prayer framework that we can pray 2000+ years later.
Whether you're praying, serving or meeting, I'm excited and most importantly God is thrilled that you're taking a step of faith and caring for your neighbor. I'd love to hear from you or learn other ways you're reaching your neighbors with God's love and learning to Live on Mission!