Is BAM’S Evil Twin Your Business Partner?
In this blog I usually consider BAM and talk about commonsense in the Other culture and how to get it. It’s time to talk about spiritual commonsense and how little we have.I know, I speak from experience.
The business of missions is always the work of Jesus’ followers.
The mission for which Jesus set himself apart is now ours (john 17.19, 20)- so that the world may believe that you have sent me.
Jesus is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not for ours only, but also for those of the whole world (1 john 2). We have the same attitude (phil 2) as Jesus. We are following Jesus outside the camp (heb 13). We are in Christ who is formed in us (gal 4.19)
We were a weighed down people, now resurrected in Christ and happily bowed down before our Father the King. Is this you? We are willing volunteers in this the day of His power (ps. 110:3). Not taken out of the world (jn 17 again) we daily feed on grace (heb 13 again) finding value at the altar, hoping to snatch some from the fire, sometimes forgetting but always turned again to remember that we ourselves have been and are being saved and delivered from evil.
In our day and culture, are we turned from that priority path of humility and grace by reconstructing missions as business? Our American task-orientation can be quickly fueled by self-reliance and ambition, or by mere tinkering to solve a problem and evolve a product or a process.
Men may rise to positions, but their power is not spiritual power. Boards with men of notoriety may give their stamp of approval to such business. The notion that WE are something (“good people”) was and still is often carved (like a dumb wooden idol) onto the landscape of so-called Evangelical endeavor. Do we develop plans and construct budgets and other infrastructures to support them, while lost on us is an infrastructure of the Spirit? Of prayer and the Word of life?
This is not about discarding business savvy or any utility within our culture that will advance the cause of Christ. To make missions as business, to effect missions from some source other than the current tap of Living Water is to work outside the Kingdom of God.
You can have this scheme or that – a compassionate and innovative enterprise that provides you entry into the devil’s domain in the wildest city—but if the power of Jesus’ resurrection is not in view, then it is likely that your calling is not to Jesus’ mission but to some other business altogether.
If we train by science and intuition so that there is every possible insight into the values, ways and intricacies of Other cultures, but we do not study the grace of God and the gracious God who extends His infinite goodness to us Cretans, then what business do we have?
You can write a strategic plan that seeks to lead a group of Jesus’ people into good works and gospel-spreading. It may seem a good plan in its scope and content and intent, including a spiritual component. It may win the approval of many and get financial support. It may seem the best of both mission as business and BAM. But, what of Christ? Where will He be? Will his Spirit stay or leave?
Will there be boasting of Christ in the Other culture? Yes, if we are found in a corner, in a closet, daily boasting of Christ. I say all this recognizing both my own inclinations to race TO DO and the Spirit who inclines me to be still and to devotion.