Since God has so generously let us in on what he is doing, we’re not about to throw up our hands and walk off the job just because we run into occasional hard times. We refuse to wear masks and play games. We don’t maneuver and manipulate behind the scenes. And we don’t twist God’s Word to suit ourselves. Rather, we keep everything we do and say out in the open, the whole truth on display, so that those who want to can see and judge for themselves in the presence of God. (2 Corinthians 4: 1-2, The Message)
Abide means to rest, to remain, to stay. Jesus says in John 15: 7-8, If you abide in me and my words abide in you, ask for whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. My Father is glorified in this, that you bear much fruit and become my disciples.
I still think about mission, evangelism, and the difference between what I’ve been told and taught by some and what I find in scripture. I’m taking a class from the Inspire School of Discipleship — I’m one of the co-leaders, actually — called “Biblical Principles for Missional Discipleship”. Inspire teaches the Biblical and Wesleyan principal that we are called by God to be missionaries in our lives, the lives we have been given, in the families and the neighborhoods where we dwell. We don’t have to go to China or Asia (or California or Oregon!) to be missionaries — we can and are called to be missionaries where we woke up today.
In AA we are to “carry the message” and “practice these principles in all our affairs” as part of working the 12 Steps. We show what we have been given, we tell our stories of sobriety, of redemption, to those who want and need to hear. We lives our lives out loud, without wearing the masks of a false self, without a fake confidence or an assurance that is not real.
As disciples of Jesus we are called to do the same thing; live authentically, share our lives as they are, and as we seek to grow in Christ we share that, too, and therefore we may begin to make disciples WITH Jesus, not just given a task to make disciples FOR Jesus. There’s a difference — can you tell?