Over the past few years there has been a lot of focus on organizations working to develop, or at least get clear, on their Mission, Vision, Values. There is great value in understanding your purpose, where you want to go in the future, and what you will not sacrifice to get there.
I believe the same holds true for individuals…until we are clear on our purpose in life, where we are going, and how we will live each day as we work to reach our goals we will spend a lot of time being “tossed about” by the winds of this world.
I believe that all followers of Jesus share a common mission, or purpose which Jesus gave us and can be found in Matthew 16 & 28.
“Then Jesus said to his disciples, “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will find it.” Matthew 16:24-25 (NIV)
“Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” Matthew 28:18-20 (NIV)
How each Jesus follower lives out the process of daily “taking up their cross to follow Jesus” and “going forth to make disciples” will look different. There will be similarities to be sure, but our talents, abilities, challenges and communities are different so the practical outworking of the mission will look different. This is where the challenge to listen closely for the still small voice of God’s invitation is important. How and where is God inviting you to live out the great mission of the Kingdom?
Here is how I have understood God’s invitation for me to personally live out the Mission of all Jesus followers.
Vision Statement for Daniel Nicewonger:
Success* is continuing to allow the Spirit of God to work in my life, maturing and shaping the person I am becoming, all the while remaining sensitive and responsive to the leading of the Spirit…
Success is empowering Nancy to know and pursue God’s call upon her life. To love her, support her and encourage her in such a way that she is comfortable taking bold steps…
Success is helping Joseph and Rayann grow into adults who love Jesus, and are mature, responsible adults who know and pursue God’s call upon their lives…
Success is helping people encounter Jesus in the midst of their everyday lives…
Success is gathering a people who have experienced the transforming power of Jesus Christ in their lives and joining together, working to transform tired, weary institutions into energized, mission focused fellowships passionate about sharing Christ with the world.
* Success is remaining faithful to what I understand God’s vision for my life to be.
I have a Rule for Life (Values) that goes along with this and outlines in greater detail what I value in life and helps set a path for how I will live life. I struggle to be faithful to the path it outlines yet it serves as a reminder to how the Mission of Christ and Vision for my life are to be lived out in the day to day. If you would be interested to see what that looks like send me an email and I can get you access to it.