It’s time to move beyond the hatred, divisiveness, labels and polarization that became the norm during the US election cycle. We were never destined to find our identity or a savior in a candidate or political party and we’re not called to find those things in our president or this current administration now. Some are still mourning, while others are continuing to defend and gloat.
We must move on and get to the work we’ve been called to. Our work and calling is not building an empire or personal kingdom in this world by alining with a political party or worldly ideology, neither is it to condemn and curse this world and hide until Jesus returns. We are here to be a disruptive agent, a refuge and a relevant hope.
As a disruptive agent we should be decisively and glaringly counter-culture. To be counter culture at its roots means to love and care where our culture hates and demonizes; It means running towards those who the majority says to reject; It means drawing attention to unjust laws, practices and systems that advantage some while disenfranchising others; It means giving voice and value to those who have been silenced and dehumanized; It also means confronting and speaking to power on behalf of those who lack the know how and access to do so. In doing these things we begin to look and act like a 21st century Jesus.
As a refuge and relevant hope, we’re embracing the reality we’re not here for ourselves but we are here for others. Jesus said the greatest among us must be a servant (Matthew 23:11). We have to embrace a world-view that says, I am here at this point in time to have my gifts and passions employed by the King of Kings not a natural king. For the entrepreneur that means moving towards social entrepreneurship where sustainable enterprise is imagined and created not simply to make money but to reach and transform lives and communities. One example is Becca Stevens and Thistle Farms, who among other things make natural bath and body products while training, employing and providing housing for a staff which is comprised of women who are former inmates, drug addicts and sex-trafficking victims. For the executive, social-worker, dentist, medical professional, teacher, chef etc. being a refuge and relevant hope means no longer seeing our skills and professions solely and simply as a way to make money but seeing them as a way to serve others and meet needs through volunteerism and community service.
Being a disruptive agent, refuge and relevant hope means churches must be reimagined. The Church can no longer exist simply as the place to gather a couple of times a week for the purpose of helping us get through the week. The Church must become the missionary. The Church can no longer be the place that exists primarily or exclusively to gather in community and celebration of Christ’s work in “us” but we must be the place where people are trained, equipped and mobilized to engage the culture and society in which they live. The Church must realize its role as the agent and ambassador existing to embrace the most vulnerable and challenge the most powerful on behalf of the King. The Church must release disciples into society rather than existing as a place to hide from society. Throughout history the church has not primarily been just a different kind of place but a different kind of people. May we realize that call and mission now more than ever.
perfect God. perfecting people.