Each year on Summit’s anniversary, we get to hear the Vision Sunday sermon and the direction God is leading us as a church. It is a time to look back and see where we started as a church, where we have been over the last year, and where we believe God is leading us to go next. Summit’s vision is to form biblically functioning communities that reach lost people, connect in Christ-centered relationships, teach truth, serve others, and worship God.
Breaking down the first part of the vision, as a follower of Christ and part of Summit Church, what do you think it means to reach lost people?
I think we can find some good wisdom in Jeremiah 29:4-23. The context behind the story is the Jewish people failed to be obedient to their promises to God, despite God asking them to change. So God allowed Babylon to conquer Jerusalem (and the southern kingdom of Judah). The prophet Jeremiah is now writing a letter to the defeated Jewish exiles, who were forced to leave Jerusalem and live among the pagan Babylonians in Babylon.
What God is asking the Jewish people to do next is radical! God tells the Jewish exiles living in Babylon, through Jeremiah, to not resist the foreign conquerors they live with, but go “seek the peace and prosperity of the city to which I have carried you into exile” (verse 7). Why would God ask them to bless their enemy, especially after they had been defeated by the Babylonians?
I believe it was a foreshadowing of what Jesus would say approximately 600 years later. What Jesus asked of His followers then and what He asks us to do is radical! Jesus said in Matthew 5:43-45, “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I say to you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven.”
Our great God is a God of love! If you are a follower of Christ and you understand Jesus died for you and paid for your sins because He deeply, deeply loves you, then you also understand that He is calling you to be transformed into Christ for the sake of others… to become a missionary for Christ, just as God asked the Jewish exiles to become missionaries in Babylon.
Which lost person—neighbor, co-worker, family member, friend—has God put on your heart to show love to, be a friend to, invite for a meal, invite to church?
Perhaps God is calling you and me to be everyday missionaries. Pray, and go out of your way to love and to be on mission today!