Do you ever feel like it’s tough to lace together daily life with The Great Commission? It used to feel like 2 separate things for me. There was the stuff you do for God’s Kingdom, and there were the every-day tasks.
I realized that I was always SO tired because I was trying to run two races at once. I was doing grocery shopping, errands, work/school in one “marathon”, and the Church, serving others, and worship in another marathon! It was like trying to run back and forth between completing two races…which is IMPOSSIBLE!
Guys, today I’d love to share a bit of my journey with figuring out how to merge the two things together. God never intended for us to have this weird divide between Great Commission and daily life…daily life IS our great commission!!
I’m all about practical action steps- after all, how useful is advice if we can’t put it into practice?? So here are 7 ways that I’m learning to live out the great commission as part of the everyday. We’re not all called to be working in missions, but we’re all sent by Jesus as missionaries right where we’re at!
Neighbours. We can’t underestimate the beautiful opportunities we have right in our own neighbourhood!! We moved this past Summer, and right from the beginning Wes wanted us to be super purposeful in meeting and getting to know all of our neighbours. I won’t lie that it was super out of my comfort zone. I admire Wes for his insanely outgoing personality… but I believe we all have an opportunity right where we’re placed. In the past months we’ve had the chance to have some of the neighbours in our home, we’ve been over to some of their homes, we’ve swapped numbers and have plans to see more of our neighbours in the future. We’ve gotten to know some of their interests, beliefs, struggles and needs. I’m so excited to see how we’ll be able to share Jesus with them in a meaningful way as the years go by!! It all starts with a relationship. Even if you’ve lived where you are for years and don’t know your neighbours, what better time than now?? Bake some cookies and bring them over and say hi- it might even be a perfect opportunity to use Christmas as an excuse 🙂
School/Work. We have so many opportunities in our schools or workplaces to be a light to those around us. I know you might be thinking about how it sucks to feel like you don’t fit in where you’re at, and you maybe can’t seem to get in with a group of people because they always just invite you to go out and party with them. Here’s my suggestion: Don’t just decline, invite THEM! I guarantee you either have some sort of Church potluck, small group, Church concert/convention etc. coming up in the near future, so why not invite them?? Or even better yet, invite them to your home for a games night or coffee and dessert. Get to know them. Give them some insight into your own life. I’ll let you know the three ways this scenario has often played out for me. 1: they’ll decline because it’s ‘not their cup of tea’, but they’ll be appreciative of the invite and you’ll maybe even talk more when you see each other. It’s a closed door for now but possibly an open door in the future. 2: they’ll decline because it won’t work for them that day, but you’ll end up having coffee another time and start the beginning of a friendship. 3: They’ll accept your request out of curiosity and you now have a solid beginning to an incredible opportunity to share Jesus in the context of a relationship! A lot of people lack real relationships and welcome this type of opportunity.
Errands. I’m not sure if I’m the only one who still actually goes to a bank anymore…but whatever your weekly errands look like- grocery shopping, post office, bank, etc.- you have opportunities to be Jesus to people, my friend!! I honestly used to disregard these opportunities as unimportant or not very fruitful. I feel ashamed at this attitude now when I look back. I’ve resolved to start being much more purposeful with these opportunities. I’m often served by the same lady each time I go to the bank, and a couple of the same ladies every time I go to the grocery store- maybe you can think of a couple of these types of examples for yourself. Envision them and how you could use them. What about showing kindness, patience, or grace when you’re not served well or are unfairly handled? What about showing love by asking them how THEY are doing, in a way that shows them you sincerely care? If they say they’re only doing “OK” or having a bad day, what about asking them if you can pray for them? Radical, I know…but people’s entire view of Christianity can be changed by these small interactions. What about bringing them a coffee? What about using something purposeful to share a message? I recently purchased myself a sweatshirt that says on it: Your brokenness is welcome here. The lady who created them has some incredible stories of having used it during her day to day interactions with strangers to share the hope of Jesus with the broken, speaking the message of the healing power of our Saviour with them. I’m excited to see which opportunities God will bring me with mine!
Social Media Platforms. Every once in a while I do a check to see if I’m still using my social media in a way that’s God-honoring. This doesn’t just mean sharing scripture, although this can be great to do too, but how I’m pointing to Jesus in my account. Do other Christians who are younger than myself look at my account and see someone who loves God, or do they see someone who looks just like the rest of the world? If I had to ask my followers what they’d say my main interests or priorities are, what would they say based on my account(s)? Do I use my social media platforms as an opportunity to shine light into darkness? Do I use it to encourage others?
Giving. Okay, so I already mentioned at the beginning that we’re not all called to work in ministry. BUT, one way we can be engaged in the missions happening around the world is to give to the ones that we’re passionate about. Maybe something that gets you super excited is ministries that work with people who are homeless and help them become self-sustaining again. That’s awesome! Then I highly suggest that you give to an organization that you’ve done research on and want to support. Often times they will even send out updates that you can read and be excited about, or give you opportunities to also support in one-time volunteer positions. When you give to specific things that God’s given you passion for, you’re more likely to also be praying for that mission throughout the week and being engaged with it in other ways. It says in 2 Corinthians 8 that God loves when we give willingly with joy- not under compulsion or begrudgingly. Give of your abundance to others. Your generosity will be a light to others, and honestly, it’s just a great way to enable others doing work for the Kingdom that you might not be called or equipped to do!
Be an Encourager. This one is so often overlooked, but so important!!! Don’t ever underestimate the difference it makes to ENCOURAGE someone! I never realized how valuable (or how simple!) it is until I received a very meaningful encouragement from someone years ago. It was at a point in my faith where I was really starting to grow and that encouragement honestly pushed me forward in a way that I couldn’t have anticipated. This gave me the resolve to become an encourager to others around me. It’s so easy to weave into your daily life: write someone a meaningful card, send someone a kind anonymous letter, make a meal for someone who’s struggling at home, invite someone over for a tea to encourage them in person, send a quick encouragement text to a friend, gift someone with a prayer journal or other form of meaningful encouragement…I’m sure you’re already starting to think of some more ideas right now!
See the opportunities to Worship throughout the day. If you’re anything like me, you’ve probably struggled at one point or another to remember that God is always present with you…it’s kind of weird when I think about. Here’s a Best Friend, Counselor, Father, and Mighty King walking with me throughout the day, and yet I only make an appointment with him first thing in the morning and then ignore him the rest of the day?! It doesn’t make sense! For an obsessive planner like me, figuring out how to naturally weave in conversations with God throughout the day was SUPER tough at first. But to be honest, it takes practice to start feeling natural. Now it’s become natural for me to be in conversation with God as I go. Thanking Him for the sunshine as I walk. Praying for friends and family that God places on my heart as I drive. Asking Him for wisdom and discernment as I’m in the midst of a situation. All of these sorts of things. Let’s remember that when Jesus died and rose again, the veil in the temple was torn in half. The presence of God no longer resides in a temple or Church building- it’s within us everywhere we go. So I don’t want to just worship in a Church building. Instead, I want to be in awe of God, thanking God, asking God questions, getting to know God, and being spoken to by God as I go from place to place during my day. If i’m connected to God, I won’t be as likely to miss opportunities that arise.
Be blessed this week, friends, as you figure out how to run the race while also simultaneously running through daily life! Go and be a blessing wherever you’ve been placed. Praying for you, and rooting for you.
“But thanks be to God, who always leads us in Christ’s triumphal procession and uses us to spread the knowledge of Christ everywhere we go, like a sweet perfume. For we are to God the pleasing aroma of Christ among those who are being saved and those who are perishing…Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. So all of us who have unveiled faces see and reflect the glory of God. And the Lord, who is the Spirit, transforms us more and more into his glorious image.” 2 Cor. 2:14-15 & 3:17-18