Mission Of Love

Awe and wonder. Have you felt those emotions lately? Have you felt the awe and wonder at the sight of the Father unfolding this beautiful mission of love among us lately? It happens to me all the time here, usually when I hear another of the constant stream of stories of some amazing thing God has done through one or a group of us or how he has miraculously provided a need in some way.

If you didn't know it, we had our first Adullam Advisory Board meeting a couple of Sunday's ago. There must have been 15 or so of us there, each representing a different facet of what God is doing in our midst.  And there were still others who were not able to make it who could have been there. That is a lot of representing! I was in awe of God again just sitting there with everyone as I witnessed the vision of God's mission to the inner city of Milwaukee taking shape before my very eyes!

Jesus is on this beautiful, amazing mission to the inner city of Milwaukee. And he is calling a whole bunch of us together in this hour to join him in what he is doing. I have a thought about this mission I've been wanting to share. Its from the gospel of Mathew:

       Then the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go.17 When they saw him, they worshiped him; but some doubted. 18 Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” (Mathew 28:16-20).

   Jesus' last words to us before He ascended to his Father's right hand were the mission assignment all of us were to be engaged in until this age finally comes to a conclusion. We call it the Great Commission. And it is great.  Its such exciting stuff! We actually have a clearly articulated, God-given purpose that we all get to focus on together! No confusion or doubt as to what it is. No ambiguity. We don't have to fret and wonder about what we are supposed to be doing with our lives.

   Now, I understand that the specifics of how it gets walked out by each of us may not
be so clear all the time.  We walk by faith, not sight. Missions are adventures and adventures by definition mean not always knowing what's coming next. But I'm humbled by the fact that the almighty God, our Papa, the holy, exalted, infinitely amazing, living God actually desires that frail, broken, needy little ones like us join him in his work of reclaiming a lost world.
And this mission is a thing that just consumes his loving heart. He cares for us and the world so much! All of us are the most precious thing in creation to him. And he goes and invites us to join him in what he's doing.  Whoa! What a privilege! What an honor!

   I'm bringing this up because ever since my wife Emily and I became connected to Adullam two years ago I have been blown away by the heart for Papa's mission that lives in all of you. I'm serious here. This is not flattery. Its true. I pray you will receive it and be encouraged by it. Because I believe our Papa is delighted  with the hearts of His kids.

   Whether it's the prayer meeting on Monday night, or the outreaches, the summer work projects, or the different ministries and volunteers partnering with us, I see it over and over again. This passionate desire to love the city of Milwaukee with our Father's love and lead them to Jesus. It's like an unquenchable fire in you guys. To be honest, I've been personally challenged to examine how it lives in me by the example of this community many times.

     So, if you are reading this and are connected in any way to Adullam I want to start by saying "God BLESS you" for the love of God that beats your hearts so strongly that you have joined the Father in his mission in this place! May his desire to love the world grow in you more and more.  

     The other thing I've noticed over my time here is another thing that burns in you all: love for God. A love that is willing to lay down anything so that it can know Him better. A love that lays aside distractions to seek him and spend time getting to know him better. I see it in the atmosphere of hunger for God and his Presence that we experience at prayer on Monday nights, or on our worship nights. It was there during our first 24 hours of non-stop prayer in our prayer room we did last August. And its there during the 12 hour worship Burns we started last month. 

     The bible teaches us that worship is why we're alive. Did you notice the word "worship" in this famous passage on mission? I missed it for a long time. Every time I would see it I focused on the mission part (not that thats bad!). I missed the worship! I missed that the disciples came to Jesus and were transfixed at the sight of him that day! They were overcome one more time by how amazing he is! 

   And Jesus didn't jump right in and start dialoguing with them. He let them experience the glory of Him and received their worship before he launched into what they were supposed to be doing. The text says "When they saw him they worshiped him". First they worship, then they get their mission. First they get close to him and catch a fresh vision of all he is, and only then do they get their mission.

    * I don't know about you, but I am usually tempted to do it the other way around! I want to get busy doing stuff for God. And then afterwards I try to get to the worship and intimacy.  Life is busy! Ministry can be very busy!   

      But I believe  the only way the mission of God is ever truly accomplished by us is when we do what the disciples did and put our mission and worship in the right order. When falling head over heels in love with him is our highest priority. When its even more important to us than the mission he gave us. When intimately knowing him is the highest priority of our lives-so much so that our calendars and to-do lists prove it. When God's glory and love are actually being experienced by each of us on some level.

      I'm sharing this because this is the heart I see in the community at Adullam and I long for it to be our heart for as long as God chooses to allow us to be here. My prayer for us is that this love in us will only grow stronger and stronger as time goes on. That seeking his face together will always be our highest priority.

            God has given us an amazing team of folks who are dedicating themselves to help facilitate a lifestyle of intimacy with God. We have Monday night prayer. We have monthly worship nights where we gather to simply be with God together, worship, and pray. We just had our first "Burn", 12 hours of non-stop worship and prayer in the presence of God. And in August we launched our Adullam prayer room and did our first 24 hours of non-stop prayer together.   Everyone associated with Adullam in any way, really anyone in our city, is invited to come and join us in seeking him at any of these times. We will be working on making sure the calendar on the website is updated with all things worship and prayer so you can know whets going on. And we will be working on communicating via email with the Adullam family on all that is happening.

   I would like to continue to share things related to prayer or other topics on the blog from time to time. I hope they will be an encouragement.

   Its a privilege to be on his mission with all of you. But its also my total joy to seek him with you, find him, and fall more in love with him together. I don't want that to ever stop!

            Bless you all. 


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