He caught me with the second paragraph!
I recently began reading Follow: A Simple and Profound Call to Live Like Jesus by Pastor Floyd McClung. I knew Pastor McClung by name, but not much more. I liked the title. I got the book for free. As I started, he had a limited amount of time to grab my attention and convince me to read the whole book. He did it with the second paragraph of the Introduction where he said,
"All followers and seekers of Jesus must wrestle with three simple yet profound truths . . ."
1. Worship: to love and obey Jesus as a life-style -- with passion and purpose.
2. Mission: to love those who don't follow Jesus -- with courage and decency.
3. Community: to love other followers of Jesus -- with intentionality and transparency.
That resonates with me. It makes me think, Does that description fit me? Do others see that in my life?
The more I think about McClung's three truths, the more I put them into the context of Jesus' words from Matthew chapter 22, "'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’"
In a sense, the first part of that is relatively easy. There is only one God to love. We either follow Him or not. Some things really are black and white.
The second commandment is more difficult because there are over 7 billion people out there who could be considered my neighbors. How in the world can I love each or all of them as I do myself?
Maybe this is a case of circular reasoning that actually works. The most important thing for me to do is love the Lord God. Establishing and maintaining that relationship then becomes the best possible thing I can do for myself. If that’s the best I can do for my own good, it makes sense that helping others establish and maintain a relationship with God is the best thing I can do for them. They, in turn, because of their relationship with God, will also pass it to their neighbors. And on and on . . . .
I think that’s something called missions.