Saturday, August 23, 2008

Go Missional

This week's small group curriculum wraps up the Red Letter Summer and reminds us that everything we do is spiritual.

Big Idea:
Jesus is the sovereign Lord of all things, and in God’s economy there is no difference between sacred and secular. This means that all things belong to God, and we are called to honor Him in everything, whether we are working, playing, or worshipping.

Many Christ-followers separate the sacred from the secular. They no longer believe that all of life is spiritual, so they compartmentalize their faith by separating the spiritual aspects from the “less spiritual” aspects of life. In this philosophy, the spiritual stuff belongs at the church and the rest of life is inherently secular. They function as though God doesn’t care about our hopes, dreams, ambitions, and achievements; all He cares about are the spiritual disciplines of prayer, worship, bible study and tithing. The tragedy is that this “compartmentalization” separates God from 90% of their lives.

Compartmentalizing our lives also affects our mission in the world; it prevents us from living out our faith in practical and meaningful ways. It limits ministry to what we do on Sunday, and it leaves the rest of the week and the remainder of the world to the forces which seek to shape it. It restricts us to only ministering in spiritual ways through worship, prayer, and ministry rather than reaching out naturally by feeding the hungry, clothing the needy, standing for justice, caring for the planet, and defending the helpless. Jesus took radical steps toward the re-integration of things spiritual and material—at least for those who perceive it and believe it. The uniting of the sacred and the secular goes to the very heart of the mission of Jesus in our world.

So, how do we live an integrated life? (1) By acknowledging Jesus Christ as Sovereign over all. (2) By seeing ourselves as stewards of all Jesus Christ has placed in our lives. (3) By looking for God’s presence in all places at all times. (4) By committing to the advancement of His Kingdom in every sphere of life.

Discussion Questions: (read the scriptures & discuss)

1 Peter 4:10-11
In which areas of our lives should we bring God praise? What areas of life do we typically consider secular? Why? Discuss how we can make all areas of life sacred and bring God praise and glory.

Matthew 28:16-20
Discuss who Jesus is calling us to reach when He calls us to go to all nations. How should this affect our daily lives? Why should we not be afraid to live out the great commission and go missional?

Colossians 3:23-24
How does this change the way you look at your job and daily responsibilities?

Taking Action: Identify areas of your life and relationships that you have treated as non-spiritual. Intentionally plan how you can treat these areas and relationships as sacred. Go missional and represent Christ everywhere you go, in all you do, and to all you meet.

Ministry Time

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