If you are a pastor or network leader (district, denomination, network), this article will be of special interest. Please read to the end.
Jesus was sent.
Forty-one times in the Gospel of John, Jesus refers to himself as being sent by God. He was sent to preach the good news, he was sent to the lost sheep of Israel, and he was sent to speak the words of God. Prior to his crucifixion he prayed to the Father for the unity of the church, “So the world may believe that you have sent me” (John 17:21).
Jesus sent others.
The disciples were sent two by two in Mark 6 and the Greek verb “apostello” (to send) is used seventy-nine times in the New Testament. But there is one instance that stands out.
It was after his resurrection, and the disciples were huddled together behind locked doors for fear of the Jews. Jesus came and stood among them. He gave them a message of peace, showed them his hands and his side, and then commissioned them with these words,
“21As the Father has sent me, so I am sending you.” 22 And with that he breathed on them and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit."
God breathed on Adam to become a living being, God breathed on the Valley of Dry Bones in Ezekiel, and Jesus breathed on the early apostles. This was a creative act. The Spirit of God would indwell them and empower them to live sent.
The Mission of God
There is a progression to sent-ness.
The Father sends the Son. The Father and Son send the Spirit. The Father, Son, and Spirit send the people of God. The commission to make disciples in Matthew 28 contains the phrase, “In the name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Sprit” and reminds us of the trinitarian mission of the Godhead.
Our God is a sending God.
This point has been emphasized in the doctrine of the Missio Dei or “mission of God”. The word “mission” comes from the Latin word missio which means to send. The self-giving, generous, sending nature of God is a reminder that mission is a divine attribute from eternity past.
“Mission is not the result of what God does but rather who God is.”
We love because God is love.
We speak truth because God is truth.
We live on mission because God is mission.
God does not remain in heaven as an uninvolved actor in the word. Instead, he goes before us like a king riding a white horse and leading the church onward. God is always moving.
“John Wesley understood God as a seeking and sending God whose essential nature is love.”
It was this understanding that kept him moving and itinerating from place to place. Where might God be sending you?
Discover Your Calling
I chose the image above specifically for those who like to sit on the top of tall buildings while drinking “root beer” and contemplating life. I’m kidding.
There are those who think that discovering their calling is like a magic 8-ball. It’s mysterious at times, difficult to discern, and often produces anxiety in the process.
This is the wrong approach. Paul urges us in Ephesians 4:1, “Live a life worthy of the calling you have received”.
You have already received a calling. It is not exclusive to clergy, spiritual all-stars, full-time missionaries, or Christian workers.
It is for everyone.
“The primary calling we have received is to be a disciple who makes disciples. The discovery process is found in the details.”
We want to help.
In the fall of 2021 we helped nearly 200 people discover their calling through a simple, 5-session process called Live Sent. We now want to offer this course to everyone…for free! This process can be self-guided or used with a coach in a cohort setting.
The five sessions follow a simple progression-
The Call of God- Learning more about calling and obedience.
The Call from Above- Learning how to be disciples who make disciples.
The Call from Outside- Learning to have eyes to see the incredible harvest.
The Call from Inside- Learning how to hear from the Spirit.
The Call Ahead- Learning how to choose faith over fear.
Do you want to discover your calling or mobilize others to do the same? Consider one of these options.
FREE for individuals- If you would like to go through this process on your own, go to groundswell.pathwright.com and work through the five sessions at your own pace.
FREE for groups- If you would like to take a group of people through this process download the Live Sent Leader’s Guide by clicking here. This guide will give you everything you need to get started as well as the link for each of the online sessions.
$199 for customized experience- If you would like to customize this content for your church and provide unlimited access to the online platform for 12 months, simply click here for more info.
Do you know of anyone who needs to discover their calling? Please feel free to share this FREE resource with them or share on social media!