What does God desire of us? What does He want from His people?
In Scripture, we see that our God is a God of mission. He is a missionary God, sending His own Son into the world for our sake. The word “Incarnation” literally means “in the flesh” or “in the meat.” So Jesus is God “in the meat”, contextualized in human form as a first-century Galilean rabbi. In Jesus, we most clearly see God’s mission. Jesus embodies God’s deepest desires as the ultimate expression of love for God and love for others.
Jesus teaches that these two commands constitute our mission as well. We are to contextualize love for God and love for others in our own neighborhoods and communities, in this day and time. We are to be love “in the meat” wherever we find ourselves. And, like Jesus, we are sent for the sake of others. That’s the heart of the Gospel. People who love God and love others are Good News for the world. We embody the mission of God.
So back to our original question: what does God desire for us?
Love God. Love Others.
To live this way is to live on mission, to live a life that points to the missionary God. This is what it means to be missional. We are to live as missionaries in our culture, incarnating a deep and holistic love for God that encompasses every facet of our lives. And, in turn, these deep “in the flesh” way of loving God inevitably intersects our day-to-day human interactions. We search for ways to love our neighbors and co-workers and family members in the same way God has loved us.
On mission, love is both our motivation and our message. The love of Christ compels us (2 Cor. 5:14) to demonstrate love for the sake of others as we implore them on Christ’s behalf: be reconciled to God (2 Cor. 5:20). To put love first is to live missionally, embodying the Good News of a God who IS love.
May we be missionaries in this community, ambassadors of Christ as we love God and love others.