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Saturday, March 17, 2012

On mission with Jesus

Ever wonder if there is a particular way we should be acting in the face of those with the many needs we see around you?  Jesus chose twelve - sent them out - not to be observers, but to participate in the mission he was on.  We often find ourselves in the position of observer when we are called to act.  Often it is because we really don't know "how" to be on mission with Jesus - we complicate it so much!

He gave them power to kick out the evil spirits and to tenderly care for the bruised and hurt lives.  (Matthew 10:1 The Message)

Jesus chose twelve - none of them were the most stellar of citizens, the most educated, or the most "qualified" for their "calling".  Yet, each of them possessed something Jesus was looking for - obedience!  Willingness to do as instructed - even when they did not fully understand all which was involved in their calling.

Why did Jesus choose these twelve?  It was in response to the needs around him!  Look at what Matthew records for us in the ninth chapter:  36 When he saw the crowds, he had compassion on them because they were confused and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd.37 He said to his disciples, “The harvest is great, but the workers are few. 38 So pray to the Lord who is in charge of the harvest; ask him to send more workers into his fields.” (New Living Translation)  He SAW, was MOVED to compassion, and PETITIONED his Father to send workers into the fields. 

He "noticed" the need.  This is the first step toward being on mission with Jesus - we have to notice the need around us.  It may be as simple as a kid who needs a ride to basketball practice after school because his single mom works full-time and cannot be there to get him safely to and from the practices.  It may be as complex as starting a foundation to help those plagued with life-debilitating diseases such as HIV.  Regardless, in the "noticing" there is a "calling" which God beckons us to respond to with our hearts and hands!

He was "moved" by the need.  Noticing is only one part of being on mission with Jesus.  We "see" much - we are "moved" to very little!  Jesus saw their confusion, helplessness, and their need for a Savior.  He knew where they were walking - connected with their need.  This is all he asks of us - connect with the need.  

He "petitioned" because he knew the greatness of the need.  In calling others to work alongside, he is asking us to be on mission with him, but to also make disciples of all men.  When we are doing this, we are helping them to also be on mission with Jesus!

So, we are each called to "tenderly care for the bruised and hurt lives" around us.  The harvest is ready - how about you?  Ready to be "on mission" with Jesus in the practicality of meeting the needs of those around you?  Step up - then step out!  Be on mission!