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What Does It Mean To Be Missional?

Do you remember that fellow who was possessed by demons?  He was called “legion.”  (You can read about him here: Luke 8:26-39).  I think I met him what i was a kid!

When I was growing up down in Florida, there was a man living a block over from us that everyone in the neighborhood called, “Crazy Carl!”  His story was sad.  His son had been killed by a hit-and-run driver.  The grief was so intense that Carl started drinking all the time.  Then he lost his job and his marriage fell apart.  I guess to cover up the pain Carl started using and then dealing drugs. 

We kids were told to stay away from “Crazy Carl’s house,” but when our parents were not looking were would dare one another to look inside the windows of his house.  One day I took the dare.  The window was open.  The house smelled like raw sewage.  Inside the house were stacks of boxes, bags or trash, and dozens of empty beer bottles. 

One day, I was told that the some people wearing white coats came and took “Crazy Carl” away.  It seems that one morning, while moms were taking their children to the school bus stop, old Carl decided to walk to the bus stop too – butt naked, screaming and shouting at all the way.

It seemed funny at the time.  I was only about nine or ten years old.  But now, looking back, it seems so very sad.  Carl had many problems.  Evil was having its way with him and the impact was disastrous. 

When Jesus met people like that, he cleansed them.  He healed them.  He set them back in their right mind.  Why didn’t some followers of Jesus try to do that for “Crazy Carl?”

It’s not just the individual with the “legion” of problems.  These days there are a legion of problems that are impacting legions of people all over the place.  Evil; is b ringing havoc into people’s lives in our neighborhoods, where we work, where we play, where we go to school.  What you’ve been saying is that you see what’s happening and you are hearing the called of God to make a difference, to help create a new kind of culture where hopes can be realized and lives can be changed. You know, of course, It would be much easier just to stay hidden inside this big brick building, but you’ll have nothing of that.  You want to get out there and make a difference.  You want to be a part of a revolution.  You want to be a part of a Jesus-centered movement aimed at changing the world. 

That’s what it means to be a missional people.

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