Made for a Mission
Pastor Darrell Johns
At some time in life, most of us have asked ourselves important questions, like: “Who am I?” “Where did I come from?” “Where am I going?” “Why am I here?”
The Bible answers these questions in both general and specific ways. The answers are simple in concept, but are usually only internalized after soul-searching and complex questioning. Let me briefly address the first three questions and then focus on the fourth.
Who am I? I am God’s special creation, the product of His divine design, created in His image and after His likeness. (See Genesis 1:26-27.)
Where did I come from? I came from the dust of the ground, made a living soul by the breath of God. I am a direct descendant of Adam. (See Genesis 2:7, 3:19; Acts 17:26.)
Where am I going? I will live forever in one of two eternal destinations. Redeemed people will spend eternity in the presence of God in the New Jerusalem. Unredeemed people will spend eternity in torment in the Lake of Fire. (See John 5:25-29; Revelation 20:11 – 21:8.)
Let’s talk about that fourth question, “Why am I here?” In keeping with the idea that this question has a simple answer, I am here to bring glory to God in this life, so I can be glorified with Him in the life to come. (See Sermon on Sunday, October 8, 2017.)
The answer to “Why am I here?” has far-reaching implications. You are here on purpose and for a purpose. You were made for a mission. You are not an accident. You are valuable to God. You are complete in Jesus Christ. Your life finds meaning in your relationship with Him.
In October, we explored our vocational mission: “Christians at Work.” God made us with the capacity for work, to provide for our families, and to be an ambassador in the world. The places we live, work, and play are where God has deployed us as His ambassadors. We have a mission “field,” just as a fully appointed global missionary.
As God’s people, we are not aimless drifters. We know who we are, where we came from, why we are here, and where we are going. We have purpose. We are people of destiny. Life minus a mission is miserable. In fact, the unhappiest people in the world have everything to live ON but nothing to live FOR.
Embracing a sense of mission is transformational. Early in His ministry, Jesus called twelve disciples to be with Him and to be trained for their life mission. The first four were commercial fishermen, two sets of brothers: Peter and Andrew, James and John. These young adults were enjoying prosperity and financial blessings. This was not a hook-and-line operation headquartered in a run-down shack by a lonely creek bank. They had boats, nets, and hired servants. Fish were a valuable commodity. To build the family business into the enterprise it had become might have taken generations. These four young men finally had everything to live ON.
Jesus walked into the successful world of Peter and Andrew and called them. “Follow me and I will make you fishers of men.” Immediately, they left their nets and followed Him. Not far away, James and John were in their ship with their father, mending their nets. Jesus called them and at once, they left the ship and their father, to follow Jesus. (See Matthew 4:18-22.)
With a future in fishing, why would four upwardly mobile men forsake the family businesses to follow Jesus? Jesus did not bait them by saying, “Come after me, and I will give you a full-ride scholarship to the college of your choice.” He did not say, “Come after me, and I will give you a lucrative contract or a large signing bonus.” Jesus did not promise them stock options or profit sharing. He did not lure them away from their business with an attractive retirement program.
There was no promise of wealth. Jesus called them to spend their lives fishing for men.
These astute young men did not ask about the pay scale or fringe benefits. They knew the thrill of hauling in a net full of fish. They knew that their income would pay the bills and fuel their lifestyle. But, clearly, life without a mission was an empty existence. They had everything to live ON, but Jesus offered them something to live FOR. Peter, Andrew, James, and John were captivated by a cause. They embraced the vision of seeing a net full of lost men and women, being brought into the Kingdom of God.
In November, we will explore our mission in North America with church planter David McGovern from Los Angeles. We will commit ourselves and our finances to the mission around the world with General Superintendent Dr. David Bernard, who was raised on the mission field in South Korea. Ultimately, I trust that you will clarify your purpose in life. You were made for a mission.