Why? Simple. Put yourself in the shoes of a person who has never stepped foot in the local church. When you hear the great commission for the first time, do you really understand what it means? And should anybody expect you to? Probably not. After all, you may have never heard of a "disciple" before, and if you have, it was in a movie or TV show that totally jacked up the meaning. And what does it mean to "go into all nations"? That just sounds weird, doesn't it?
So the reason we craft a mission statement is because we want to explain the great commission in words that anybody can understand, no matter their understanding of the Bible or Christianity.
What is our mission statement at Echo Church? To see people trade in their dreams for God's dream.
Allow me to unpack.
Jesus talked more about the "Kingdom" than any other subject. More than money. More than sex. More than power. And more than sin, heaven, or hell combined. Of course, as you can imagine, "kingdom" is already a difficult concept for most believers to understand, and even more so for someone far from God. What is the kingdom? It's that mysterious, powerful, heavenly reality that is "here" but "not yet," as many theologians have told us. It's what happens when God's intentions are made reality on Earth. It's God's dream for the world. So when Jesus prayed, "Father, may your Kingdom come... on Earth as it is in Heaven," It was like saying, "Dad, I want your dreams to come true on Earth as they are already fully true in Heaven." And Jesus explained to us that God's dreams are already here. They are happening. And every day, we have the opportunity to see God's dreams made true even more than the day before. THAT is the Kingdom.
And we want to see people find their place in that dream. More importantly, we want to see people who have been pursing their dream come to the profound realization that it will never be complete without Jesus. And this isn't just our mission statement. THIS IS OUR DREAM, TOO. Wouldn't that be amazing!?!?! What would it look like for every person in the world to discover that God has a dream for our world and wants us to join Him.... no, He COMMANDS that we join him, in making that dream a reality in the places where we live, work, and play.
What does it mean for a person for trade in their dreams for God's dream? Here are a few things:
- We discover Jesus. We fall in love with the true Savior. We realize our own brokenness and the need for God to rescue us from our sins. And we encounter the reality that we can be saved through the blood of the cross. When we discover God's dream, we discover a new life in Jesus.
- We are restored. It's not just our future that gets rescued from hell. It's our present as well. We discover that God doesn't just want to save us. He wants to restore us! When we discover God's dream, we discover that we become a new creation.
- We are given a mission. We begin to see our entire world through the eyes of God's dream. We can't just sit around and do nothing. We have to move to action. And we begin to do whatever it takes to see others discover Jesus and become restored as well. When we discover God's dream, we discover a mission for our lives.
So, how will you help people trade in their dreams for God's dream?