As we consider how to live a Life on Mission, we need to be sure to keep the example of Jesus in front of us. Jesus lived a very specific “life on mission” – to come into a broken world, live a perfect life, and willingly sacrifice Himself to redeem us all from an eternity separated from God. As Jesus lived out this mission, He cared for people, built relationships with them, and told them the Good News that salvation is possible for All!
We would like to challenge you this month to dive into the Gospel of John and see how Jesus set the example on caring for people, connecting with them through relationships, and shared the Hope of the Gospel with them. Realizing that we are not The Savior, and that our job is merely to point people to Jesus with our actions and words, let’s consider how we can follow His example, and live our lives on mission.
Week 1: Jesus Cared for People – This month we are looking at Jesus and how He lived His life on mission. Just as a reminder as we dive into the text, we want to be challenged to see how we can follow Jesus’ example and point people to Jesus, not try to be the savior ourselves.
Living life on mission often involves the ability and willingness to see people in our world, where we live, work, and play, and to care for them when we can. Caring for people is often messy and inconvenient, but it is part of our character as a follower of Jesus. There are many examples in the Bible of Jesus caring for people. People He knew and loved, people that were strangers, as well as people who should have been His enemy, but let’s focus on one situation where Jesus cared for someone in a practical way…
Take a moment to read John 8:2-11. Consider how Jesus cared for this woman. Was the decision to step in and help her the most convenient for Him? Was it a popular or even “acceptable” choice? Was the woman innocent?
Now consider how you would have reacted if you were Jesus. Can you think of a time when you had an opportunity to care for someone and it was inconvenient, messy, or even unpopular? How did you react?
Now consider the idea of helping someone who has made choices to end up in a bad situation. Are you willing to see them as Jesus saw this woman and step in to care for them, regardless of their past decisions?
Take some time to pray about how you can better care for people in your world this week and how you can follow the example of Jesus as you care for them.
Week 2: Jesus Connected with People – This month we are looking at Jesus and how He lived His life on mission. Just as a reminder as we dive into the text, we want to be challenged to see how we can follow Jesus’ example and point people to Jesus, not try to be the savior ourselves.
Authentic relationships are messy. But they are meant to be incredibly rewarding. When we intentionally choose to move past caring for someone and look to connect with them, we open the door to building relationships that have the potential to change our lives. This week we will look at one of the many examples of Jesus connecting with someone and how that changed their life. As you read this passage, consider these questions:
How did Jesus connect with this woman?
Why did Jesus take the time to invest in her?
What would have been the easy/acceptable way for him to interact with her?
When did Jesus move past care and into connection in this situation?
Read John 4:1-43. Take time to consider someone who may need you to invest your relational energy into. Are you willing to move past dismissing that person, past caring for them in a tangible way, and move into a more meaningful relationship with them? Prayerfully ask God to remind you of the ways He has invested in you and how you can share His love with others by connecting more deeply with them.
Week 3: Jesus Talked to People about Eternal Life – This month we are looking at Jesus and how He lived His life on mission. Just as a reminder as we dive into the text, we want to be challenged to see how we can follow Jesus’ example and point people to Jesus, not try to be the savior ourselves.
One of the greatest days of celebration for those who follow Jesus as their Savior is Easter. As we look at this week… after the celebrations are over, the food has been eaten, the egg hunts are finished, let’s not move on from thinking about the impact of Jesus’s resurrection and our eternal lives. The promise of an eternity WITH God instead of separated FROM God is a huge reason for hope! This is the hope that so many in our world desperately need to hear about.
Take a look at these chapters from John where Jesus so clearly and easily spoke about eternal life. Try to dig a little deeper and write down the verses that include the specific words “eternal life.” Examine John 3, John 4, John 5, John 6 and John 12. What did you notice as you read these chapters? What can you learn from how Jesus spoke about eternal life and how you can follow His example? Do you believe the people you live,
work, and play with are at a point of talking about eternity? Take time to think on these things and seek out a friend or mentor or church staff member to discuss this further if desired!
Week 4: How do we follow Jesus’ example? – This month we are looking at Jesus and how He lived His life on mission. Just as a reminder as we dive into the text, we want to be challenged to see how we can follow Jesus’ example and point people to Jesus, not try to be the savior ourselves.
The challenge this week is to review the past three weeks’ readings or catch up on them. Once you have read through the passages and considered the questions, we challenge you to take some time to consider how you can follow Jesus’ example in living your life on mission. Where can you care for, connect with, and/or share the hope of eternity with people in the spaces you live, work, and play? Remember, this may take time, it may not happen immediately. You need to find ways to care for people, then look for opportunities to connect in relationships with the people you are providing care for. Through building relational trust, you can pray for opportunities to share your faith. If an answer does not quickly come to you, that is ok. Ask God to show you places where you can invest in each of these ways. Keep your eyes and ears open to this specific challenge. And in the waiting, continue to dig through the Bible and look for ways that Jesus loved people through care, relationships, and providing an eternity with Him.