Then the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go. When they saw him, they worshiped him; but some doubted. Then Jesus came to them and said, "All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age." Matthew 28:16-20
What can the church do for me? We live in an age of consumption, with this mindset sinking its teeth into Christianity. We church shop looking for a community that fits our every want, need, and wish. We're often guilty of being a consumer and critic rather than a contributor and living as one whose commissioned.
For many people, the church experience is something to be consumed instead of leveraged. As a result, the world doesn't experience the power and beauty of the Church. Culture misses out on seeing the body of Christ united while serving as an agent of change in this world.
As believers, we aren't called to be for ourselves, we're tasked with being for the world. The world doesn't have to guess what the church is against because for far too long, we've devoted a great deal of energy making that known. What the world needs is an advocate and to hear what the church is for, namely them.
Being for the world looks much different than one would expect. It's subversive, quiet, and behind the scenes. It searches for ways to serve rather than be served. It entails engaging culture with humility rather than rallying against it with pride. It looks like these small drips of forgiveness, love, and grace that ripple out from the places where we're planted.
The call to be "for the world" might take some around the globe, but for the vast majority of us, it means engaging in the ordinary course of our relationships as we go about our day. Our mission field is our home, neighborhood, school, social club, or board room. Each one of us must pause and ask ourselves: Who and what are we actively for? How are we leaning into what we see?
Making disciples isn't a program but a way of life. To accept Christ's mission is to be commissioned to the people around you. By orienting and reorienting our ways with the ways of God's Kingdom, God uses us to bring His redemptive love to a lost and hurting world looking for hope.
We're not here to fix, convince, or coerce others, but rather help people walk with God. We love because He first loved us. Extending a hand to others shows we understand the hand that Christ extended our way. An encounter with Christ always expresses itself through serving and others-focused love. A family collectively focused on a way of life lived under the rule of Christ's love can't be stopped.
What would it look like for you to be "for the world"?
God, may I do my part to make Your name known by the way I serve and love others. I desire for my life to speak on how an encounter with Your grace transforms a person's heart. Open my eyes to the places where there are needs around me. May I display courage and faithfulness by stepping into those places fueled by Your compassion and care. In Your name, Jesus. Amen.