1. Our Ministry Theme for 2007-08 was Every Member aMinistry! And that
is the truth. Walt, Roy, Pressley and I are the pastors – and you (and we)
are the ministers! Every one of us! Indeed, God has created us with a
purpose. And He has called us to follow Him. Partof following means
growing in the knowledgeof the Scriptures, discerning God’s will, and
walking in His ways.
Why? So wecan be navel-gazing people? No! It’s so that we can usethe
spiritual gifts He has given us in love and serviceto Him. He gifts us and
calls us - and through using thosegifts and answering thosecallings – we
fulfill God’s purposefor our lives.
But it doesn’t end there.
Our 2008-09Ministry Theme is Every Member a Missionary!
We’re sent to representChrist inthe world – and to the world!
“The world” mightbe children in SS, our next door neighbor,the coworker
in the next cubicle. Our mission field might be 5 minutesfrom PPC. It might
include homeless women, giving backpacksto children, hammering a nailin
Habitathouse. For some it has meanttravel to disaster areas, to Peru to
minister among the poorestof the poor, to Mozambique to build a church.
For others“being sent” involves packing mealsfor Stop Hunger Now, so
undernourished people mightbe fed internationally.
In the Gospels Jesus initially asks us to come to Him. Now He commissions
us to GO. Go. Go. Go. Go. Go! We are a SENT PEOPLE – sentby God.
As disciples or apprentices of Jesus, we are called to do that which He
commanded to His original team - such as:
Go and announce . . . that the Kingdom of Heaven is near. Give as
freely as you have received! (Matt 10:7-8). Love each other. Just as
I have loved you, you should love each other (John 13:34).
But, whereas the first disciples were to minister only among their
fellow Jews while Jesus was on earth, after the resurrection they – and
we – are sent out to all nations. Jesus explained this sending quite
succinctly: "As the Father has sent me, so I send you" (John 20:21).
2. We who follow Jesus are a sent people, even as Jesus was sent into
the world by His Heavenly Father. We are a community sent on a
mission together: to keep on doing the ministry of Jesus so that all
people and all creation might experience the reconciliation of God.
God has designed the church of Jesus Christ to be a "missional"
fellowship. The word "mission" comes from the Latin word missio,
which means "having been sent." Since we have been sent to do God's
work, we are a "mission" community together.
Haven’t we thought of "missionaries" as those whom we send
to far away places to make disciples of Jesus Christ? If we
think of ourselves primarily as sending others away to do "missions,"
then we may forget that we also have been sent by God into our
particular segment of the world to fulfill God's mission right where we
are. Why not take a moment, look in the mirror, and repeat “I am a
missionary sent by God to announce God’s love - and to go, fulfilling
God’s purpose where He has put me!” Then ask, “God, where would
you have me go?” GO enjoy your life of surrender, adventure, and joy!
Sincerely in Christ,
Anne T. Hilborn, Associate Pastor