Wednesday, May 23, 2007

a missional community

The church, the community of God in Christ has been called a "missional community". We are a community that shares in the mission of God in Christ in this world; we are on mission.

I believe this has to color everything else, but I also believe what we're coloring is important here. We must first define "mission" and not only that, but we must describe what it's all about. It includes but is more than just getting people "saved". In our zeal to do better we can leave the basic behind. And while we need to do better we must also hold on to the basic truth of salvation from the guilt, condemnation and power of sin and salvation to forgiveness, reconciliation and freedom, in Christ.

We're to be little christs in this world, but even more importantly we are the Body of Christ. We carry on to fulfill his once for all ministry in this world, in him by the Spirit, together. It's a ministry of being servants to all and as we have freely received, freely giving of ourselves to others.

There is much more to say here, of course. What might you like to add for now?

4 comments:

L.L. Barkat said...

In some way, perhaps God is on "mission" for us, more than we for him. And this could be an important shift in perspective.

David said...

I think we can set up working def'ns of mission that may differ somewhat according to our contexsts and how we embody Christ.

I have some good personal news. I am flying to Northwest Nazarene University for a job-interview on the 5th and 6th of June and believe I will very likely have a job teaching Economics there for at least the coming year.

As for politics, I want to see MN’s legislature(and other states in the US) turned into a unicameral structure with a hybrid election system between the (current) majoritarian and (European) representational systems. I believe this is possible if a pragmatic coalition is formed by the main third parties to pool their votes on this single issue and vote quasi-strategically in the upcoming state elections.

I'm not sure all third parties would get behind this, but it really only takes one to get the ball rolling... I think in a way, it would be a political movement that would emulate the rise of the Baptists. If you can unite a large number of people around one issue that has significant symbolic importance(in that case, the idea that Baptism/Christian belief shd not be the basis for political citizenship; in this case, the idea that third-party-friendly legislatures would make our two-party-dominated system more dynamic/responsive, as third parties who spoke to the center would be able to move the main parties' platforms.) then this has the potential for making significant future reforms possible.

I know a lot of people my age or younger(or older) are very disillusioned with politics and I can empathize, but I believe that third parties working together will be key for making our system more dynamic and restoring people's confidence in it. I hope you will consider this idea and maybe share it with others. I think if many Christian communities could get behind it, it's one way we could be salt and light in our state and country.

dlw

Ted Gossard said...

L.L., A most interesting thought. One I will gladly attempt to chew on. Thanks!

Ted Gossard said...

David, Thanks for the thought on flexible working definitions for mission depending on the specific context and calling. This reminds me of the built-in cultural adaptability of the gospel, to redeem cultures and varying situations according to their unique issues with the same message and dynamic at work, working it out according to that occasion.

And thanks for your thoughts on third parties. This sounds healthy to me. I'm registered Independent and would like more heard beyond the two parties. It's all about the other party for them. We need a bigger field representative of us all, than that. And a good shakeup (that last sentence is how I feel about politics here). Thanks.