The Alabama- West Florida Conference of the United Methodist Chruch has a new email newsletter for missions. There are good articles about mission efforts in our conference and being accomplished by our UMC Christian brothers and sisters in the conference. Check it out!
From the newsletter for June 2009:
Go! Jesus sent his disciples out many times. Take a look at Luke’s Gospel in chapter 10 (verses 1 -24) for one example. Jesus sent the 70 to cure the sick and proclaim the Kingdom of God. These were not the main 12 disciples, but others he had appointed. I imagine that those 70 were just ordinary folks. They had such success that the Bible says they returned with joy, and I can picture Jesus doing a little jig because he was so excited about what the Holy Spirit did through them.Jesus knew that it would take more than just him preaching and teaching to crowds to make a difference. In the passage from Luke, he sent those 70 not to synagogues or other buildings to preach and be in ministry; instead he sent them to peoples’ homes. Those ordinary folks went out in pairs to make relationships with other ordinary folks right where they were. And what a difference that made!If Jesus was sending out his disciples and others to meet people where they were, we also should be going out to where people are today. It’s not just the preachers and the church leaders who should go (or be sent), but our own “ordinary folks” – those who sit in the pews week after week. Let us send our own “ordinary folks” out to heal the sick and proclaim the Kingdom of God with others wherever they are.Going out to where others are can be difficult, and may take us out of our comfort zones. It can be risky, frustrating and frightening. But extraordinary transformation can come through intentional relationships; and in reaching out to others we ourselves are transformed. What would the Kingdom of God look like if every one of our congregations reached out in intentional ways through personal relationships, meeting people where they are? “But how are they to call on one in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in one of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone to proclaim him? And how are they to proclaim him unless they are sent?” (Romans 10:14-15a) Go!