Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Being Sent

Went down to one of the HopeKids kids' places last night with Hong Teck and Wie Wie. Seeing the smile on young Gabriel's face and the appreciativeness on his (non-Christian) father's face as we chatted with the family, I know that this is really so worth it. We are missionaries - not only to the little ones, but also to the heads of the households. Wonderful training for overseas missions in future. =D


On this same note, over CG last week, one bro was sharing about how he and his CG had been trying to get a bro who had backslided back to the CG by inviting him for activities and so on.

HT said something that struck me as very wise and sharp. He said that we shouldn't just focus on bringing people into CG. It's not enough. We also need to help them be sent out as well. Otherwise it is kind of meaningless to just bring people into the family of God... and then do the same kind of activities over and over again. Even the strongest army gets demoralized if they keep on training and training in camp, but never go forth to do battle. (Read Sun Tzu's Art of War. This really happened.)

Because the church is not just a hospital. It is a military hospital. To restore so as to re-send them. =) To help people experience God's calling for them - on a relational level, and also to experience God's sending them out - on a life-purpose level.

Sometimes we ask people to serve and serve so much, but the thing is, it's not what God has called them to do. So they serve more and more dryly, joylessly and eventually they wither and backslide - or if they are wise, they move to other churches where they can experience rest and renewal.

Thank God for Huaqiang and Sarah. I remember they did some thinking and praying, and then wrote down and shared with the DMM what (God-given) potential they saw in us. It was encouraging! :) That's the kind of servant leadership that inspires me to do likewise. Help people discover God's calling for their lives.

And thank God for Hong Teck's ministry philosophy that if a volunteer is not excelling in his current ministry, then we simply help the bro/sis explore other areas. It's not a performance-issue thing - it's about helping a budding disciple discover God's calling for him/her! To feel God's pleasure as he/she serves.

You know, I was talking with a bro who had just graduated last year, when he shared with me why he left church. One reason - and it is very true, unfortunately - is that he said that people in the church just seem to be drifting along, doing CG activities and bonding and all that, week after week. It was clear from what he shared that he did want a more fulfilling life than just doing "Christian" things day after day.

While, yes, he had some wrong ideas, I knew what he was talking about. I think a lot of men aren't attracted to our caregroups as it is right now, because it's all seemingly so meaningless. I mean, what is the point of calling people into the kingdom of God if we're not committed to be a family to them, and not courageous enough to be an army of the Lord?

Such a church is anaemic and is lukewarm - exciting to no one, not even to God Himself.

It is not enough to just bring people into church. We must also send them out. Come to think of it... how large is the proportion of those who are willing and looking forward to going for missions? Don't have to actually go - it is God's timing of course. But willingness to go anywhere He calls us to go? How many of us are really making plans to go for missions? Or at the very least, even bothering to fast and pray to ask God whether He wants you to go, whether it be marketplace or overseas or both? If you haven't even bothered to do that, then I think it is important to see whether you are seriously a disciple or not.

I remember during one DMM, one brother said that our church is growing, and we should prepare our structure and think ahead to accomodate the new influx. I thought about it... and now I ask: "Hey bro, I think you're missing the bigger picture. The $1 million question is: what are we doing to send them out?"

We do not experience the fullness and the exciting-ness of the Holy Spirit's power, because we are not willing to be fully committed to go wherever He wants us to go.

Hmm. I think I am writing inadequately on this topic, frankly. There's simply so many things to consider in discipleship. Sorry, I guess I am not writing very balanced on this. Not enough time lah. :P


Huanyan said...

I agree with you about the things mentioned in this post. That's why one of my fav questions about what we do in church is: to what ends?

Huanyan said...

I agree with you about the things mentioned in this post. That's why one of my fav questions about what we do in church is: to what ends?