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Missional Approach to Discipleship

A missional approach to discipleship. What does that mean to the every day person heading off to work or school? Or perhaps you are working at home (with children or without kids)?

Missional can mean many things. You might think missional is about missionaries, about serving people, or about the mission of God. It is about all three, and more.

First and foremost, missional is about joining God in what he’s already up to in your everyday, ordinary life.

If you’re struggling to feel or experience the presence of God, here’s the place to begin: Pay attention. Ask yourself at 9 am, noon, 3 pm, 6 pm, and before going to bed, “Where is Jesus in my life today?” You have an alarm on your smartphone, set it for every three hours. You may not have an answer the first couple times.

It is ok to say, “I don’t know.”

It’s not ok to stop asking. In asking, we begin the process of paying attention to more than the dings, beeps, and buzzes on our cell phone. We begin paying attention to what God is doing among us and through us. If paying attention sounds like “spirituality light.” Try it for a few days. Then ask yourself what you are learning about God, yourself, others, an your community.

If a sanctuary is your place to encounter God, carry the message, prayers, and songs with you into the world. The sanctuary is a holy place, of course. But, it is not the only place to encounter God. You might begin by living the message you heard your pastor speak about. What did she or he challenge you with this week? How are you living what s/he shared? What one step can you take? Embodiment of the gospel is an opportunity to both embody the mission and live the mission.

Before I continue, the working definition of missional offered here is: the people of God sent to announce and demonstrate the reign of God. A disciple of Jesus is a grace-filled Christ follower who puts faith into action. Taken together, a missional approach to discipleship reflects the hope of the kingdom of God and the reality of following Jesus every day.

The power of hope combined with your ordinary life brings a gospel challenge called discipleship. Because you are living in a mission field, it is a missional approach to discipleship.

to be continued…