missionaries and the decline of the American Church

mission- a: ministry commissioned by a religious organization to propagate its faith or carry on humanitarian work b: assignment to or work in a field of missionary enterprise


mission-a body of persons sent to perform a service or carry on an activity; a specific task with which a person or a group is charged (webster.com)

wait…could it be both?

in kyle lake’s book “understanding God’s will”, he says this:

“we might even go as far as to say the steady downward decline of the Church in America exists because many followers of Christ do not see their lives defined by mission. perhaps the very fact that this word–mission–evokes images of africa or india and not also new york, hollywood, merrill lynch, hillcrest hospital, or andy woods elementary school could be part of the problem. if we take our apprenticeship seriously, then Christians of all sizes, shapes, and colors should see their lives in a different light… the reason the Church has been on such a steady decline is because of this attitude: “well i’m not going to china or the middle east or india, so i guess i’ll just be a teacher instead.”…how about this: what would the face of the Church look like if we began commissioning missional Christians to andy woods elementary school? what would the face of the Church look like if we began commissioning missional Christians to hillcrest hospital? why dont we commission missional Christians to china and india…and actors living in la and ny? film students working in hollywood? accountants to phoenix, dallas, chicago…”

before i began this book, the word mission did evoke an image of africa in my head. and i’ll be honest, they dont have wi-fi in africa. so do i wanna go? honestly no. but.. do the people of texas a&m university, or austin, tx, or lockhart high school, or the dude sitting next to you at lunch today; do they all need Jesus just like the people of africa? yes. i love the way kyle describes our purpose in life as missional, i also love how he calls our following of Christ an “apprenticeship.” our society is constantly moving to be more “green” and “missional.” while not a bad thing, might we merely throw money or prayer or relief efforts to folks in 3rd world countries (all not bad things mind you), while forgetting dave the cashier or steve the waiter or officer cliff (i hide behind any big objects i can to give you a ticket) (purely a fictional person obviously :). point taken



3 Responses to “missionaries and the decline of the American Church”

  1. 1 randman January 23, 2008 at 10:21 pm

    Good word!

  2. 2 Nic Burleson January 24, 2008 at 5:32 am

    This is good stuff man…Another reason you are without a doubt on my plant team ;)….I love Kyle’s book – It is very challenging and a unique look at a subject we sometimes really misunderstand…

  3. 3 Nic Burleson January 28, 2008 at 4:30 am

    Hey playa…where did you get that cool pic for your blog heading?

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