When I was invited to contribute to the GC blog my mind wandered far and wide. What would be interesting? What would be helpful? What would enable people to engage in the mission of God? What are the ‘buzzwords’ of the day? Partnership, diaspora, discipleship, post-christendom. Or, what are the questions I get asked regularly? Does God really have a plan for my life? How can I be sure what God is calling me to? How does faith work? Why is prayer so important? What does mission mean? Who are the unreached? So my mind wandered.
It finally came to rest on four very simple words and it is these that I take for my first blog post. Like many simple things, they are deeply profound. They take a life-time to apply, understand and live out. They speak of abandonment, of consecration, of living fully for Christ, just as He calls us to. I believe, uttered aright, they are the beginning of a deeply satisfying life in Christ and a springboard to life-long adventure of faith.
So, before we give any thought to the ‘what’ of mission and ministry – what we might be being asked to do, what the best way to do it might be etc. We must start with the ‘who we are’ by settling a matter in our hearts and making our radical declaration to Christ. “Lord, whatever it takes …”
Think about it. Really, think deeply about these words.
Whatever you want to see the Lord do, are you willing. Willing to let go of anything and everything if He asks, willing to let Him lead you wherever and whenever He wants to take you, willing to entrust to Him your life, career, finances, possessions as He reveals His purposes to you. Willing to do ‘whatever it takes’ rather than ‘whatever you can manage to fit in around your plans and purposes?’
How dangerous to speak such words before our Father in Heaven, the Living God who hears all things and who knows the deepest motivations of our hearts. These four words – so easily shouted with fervour in a moment of emotional enthusiasm or spiritual bravado but which are best whispered with deep humility and sober reflection.
Unless we are prepared to say these words, unless we are committed to follow through on our confession, unless we are willing to embrace the outworking and unless we are prepared to persevere then I think most of our aspirations, thinking and planning are just chasing after the wind – we will never stay the course and our enthusiasm will evaporate at the first sign of trouble.
The mission of God, the sweet simplicity of the gospel message and it’s power to transform lives remains unchanged even if the context and culture around us shifts uneasily from one form of brokenness to another. For the UK Church to take its place within the worldwide body of Christ there is great need for people willing to do whatever it takes. Such people, characterised by humility, zeal, confidence in God and bold, outrageous faith will be the God-chasers and the Kingdom-builders of this generation.
Will you say it?
[NB All of the ideas, themes and questions are valid and might become topics of future blogs. In fact, if you want to save me from having to think too hard about future topics then please post any ideas in the comments section!]
The views expressed in this blog post are personal to the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the GC network.