Everyone is called to be a missionary, and that call comes at the same time as the call to follow Jesus.
The church in America has come to depend on professionals to “do ministry.” In many churches, the pastor, paid to do the job, is the one who is expected to carry out all functions of the church. But it was not always this way. Jesus came as God-in-the-flesh. The pattern portrayed in the New Testament is that every Christian is part of the body of Christ, and the function of Christ’s body is to be incarnational, to be Jesus Christ for the world (John 20:21).
Author David Alan Black takes on this attitude of outsourcing our mission in his shortest book, yet one he has said might be the most important that he has written: Will You Join the Cause of Global Missions? If you expect here a call to go to seminary and become a professional missionary, you will be sorely disappointed. Instead, Dave calls for us to replace outsourcing with insourcing. Instead of looking for professionals to do the ministry while the rest of us fill the pews, he is pointing us back to the Gospel Commission and the call on every Christian life to fulfill that Commission.
It is not enough in the 21st century to put a little bit of money into the church and expect the pastor and paid staff to do the work. Each one of us is called to also give of our time and talents. This little book might be dangerous. You may not be able to put it down without seeing your life radically changed. In fact, the book ends with a call to make precisely that promise.
So will you join the cause of global missions?
Dave Black blogs at Dave Black Online.