Seeing the World Through Gospel Lenses
When I was little I remember getting my very first 3d comic book, it was drawn in standard black with shades of red and blue on the outer edges that gave it a blurry feel to everything. However, it wasn’t made to be viewed with the naked-eye, you needed the special glasses that had separate red and blue lenses. Once you put those on, not only did everything become clear but the drawings would begin to pop out and it literally brought a whole new dimension into my comic book experience.
Being on mission is a lot like the experience I had of reading a comic book in 3d because we begin to look at the world around us in a completely new way. The Bible teaches us that just as the Father sent Jesus Christ into the world, so also Jesus sent his followers, with the mission to testify of him in this world (John 17:18). This means that as followers of Christ, both individually and corporately as a church, a primary concern of ours should be sharing the good news of what Christ has done (the Gospel) with those around us, not only with our words but our actions as well. When the message of the Gospel sinks into our lives it changes everything about us, one of the biggest things being that we begin to focus on others rather than ourselves. When we realize all that Christ has done for us it causes us to want to do things for others. We begin to see the world in a new way, much like reading my comic book with the red and blue lensed glasses, now we see the world through the “Gospel lenses” of Truth and Love and it changes how we live our lives.
When we look at the world through those Gospel lenses we see the truth of humanity’s condition, that we are sinful people by nature who are in need of a savior. We see the fallout of sin in peoples lives, all the pain, sorrow, confusion, and so much more and it causes us to be moved with love and compassion to intervene because we know exactly what its like. We can look back on our lives and see all the great things that Jesus has done and all that he continues to do daily,because lets face it, were still works in progress. However, now when we struggle with sin or hard times come into our lives we know how to respond and we are able to bring these things to the only one who can help, the one who said himself “Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” (Matthew 11:28). The reality is that we all need the Gospel, whether we are a Christian or not, when we grasp the truth of how much we need it, we begin to be filled with love to want to share it with others and start to see how much of what we do in our everyday lives can be used to testify of Christ and opportunities begin to open up to share the Gospel and reflect his character.
Generally when we think of “being on mission” or being a missionary we think of it in the context of going to the ends of the earth like it talks about in Acts 1:8, going to unreached people in the jungle to share the Gospel. However, when we look at the world through Gospel lenses, we see that “the mission field” is all around us, that we are surrounded by unreached people who need the Gospel just as much as those in the jungle. We begin to see opportunities to share the love of Christ and the message of what he has done for us with the people across the street, in our neighborhood, or where ever it is that we may go.