A key competency to learn - mission in mid sized groups

mission rapids
Becoming like Christ involves growth in knowledge of the CONTENT of the Christian Faith, the CHARACTER of Jesus,  as well as the COMPETENCIES of  Jesus.  This area of competencies is often overlooked but the gospels are full of them.  One of these competencies is being able to mission in mid sized groups (these are often called missional communities).  Jesus doing mission in this way is described in Lluke 8:1-3

After this, Jesus traveled about from one town and village to another, proclaiming the good news of the kingdom of God. The Twelve were with him, and also some women who had been cured of evil spirits and diseases: Mary (called Magdalene) from whom seven demons had come out;  Joanna the wife of Chuza, the manager of Herod’s household; Susanna; and many others. These women were helping to support them out of their own means.

You will notice

  • there was at least 16 of them (mid sized groups are typically 15-40)
  • they were on mission - not just hanging out together
  • the group was made up of all sorts of people
  • people made different contributions as they were able
If this sort of mission was important to Jesus and the first disciples, it must be important for us as well - these verses aren't just fillers between the incident in the Pharisee's house (Luke 7:36-50) and the parable of the sower (Luke 8:4ff).

So how can we learn this competency:
  1. Read books and articles about missional communities (mid sized groups on mission)
  2. Talk to people who know about missional communities
  3. See if you can join a missional community for a period of time (or at the very least visit one).  This is a vital part of learning - just like an apprentice plumber or surgeon will accompany an expert plumber or surgeon and not just rely on reading books or attending lectures.
  4. Think and pray about a missional vision that God might give you and others and start your own (make sure you are connected to a larger group for accountability, training and support)
  5. Have a go, continually reflect on how you are going - what works and what doesn't- and then make adjustments.   Its is how you get better at anything!!!

photo credit: IMG_1274 via photopin (license)
David Wanstall, 24/03/2015