Church on the Move

Author: sethskim  |  Category: Values, Viewpoint, Vision

 

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I was recently reading a quote from Lesslie Newbigin’s book, The Household of God. Newbigin writes,

“The Church is the pilgrim people of God. It is on the move – hastening to the ends of the earth to beseech all men to be reconciled to God, and hastening to the end of time to meet its Lord, who will gather all into one. Therefore, the nature of the Church is never to be fully defined in static terms, but only in terms of that to which it is going. It cannot be understood rightly except in a perspective which is at once missionary and eschatological.”

 
 
There is something about security, safety and comfort that we all seek. It is so ingrained in us ever since we were young. A lot of times we bring this longing in the church. Now, before I continue, I will note that the longing for those things are not inherently wrong; but it is wrong when it is place above God’s Kingdom and His glory. Sometimes, living for God means that it is dangerous and uncomfortable.

I am wondering if the Church today has lost its calling according to Newbigin’s definition of what the Church is supposed to be and do.

Are we constantly on the move? Are we trying to find more ways to bring the Gospel to the ends of the earth? Do we see ourselves on a missionary endeavor?

After doing some church plants, I am coming to the realization that churches that have been in existence for more than 7+ years start to face the temptation of getting into static mode. It is easier to settle for the status quo. It is easier to do what is more comfortable. It is easier to uphold the “institution” rather than being the church on the move.

When a church is just starting, it cannot operate with a “static” mindset or it will die. Things are constantly changing and things are constantly happening on a daily basis. We have to have the courage to follow God no matter what the cost.

But why is it that the longer a church has been established, the harder it is to fulfill its calling. We need to get back to the heart of the church as we see it from the Book of Acts. The early church was definitely on the move. It was impassioned with bringing the Gospel to the ends of the earth. As people were getting saved, more churches were being planted.

It must have been awesome to be a part of that kind of church.

The concept of being on the move and being on a mission started with God. As God sent Jesus into this world, Jesus sends us. As Jesus said, “In the same way that you gave me a mission in the world, I give them a mission in the world” (Jn 17:18, MSG).

This is my prayer for all the HMCC church – that we will be a church that is on the move with God’s mission no matter what the cost!