September 6, 2009

Journeys from Living Life through Missional Eyes

This idea of living missionally is one that I discovered and began the journey of living out the mission about 5 years ago when I started college. Now, it may sound like I have it together and really know what I'm doing - but if there is anything that I've learned the past five years of being a young missional leader it is that I'm always continually learning what exactly it means to live on mission. Jesus is slowly, thankfully redeeming me and showing me what it means even more to live it out. He does it in two ways: 1) me asking Him to open my eyes and heart to His mission and to constantly put me on it and 2) by just wanting to put me on mission and He pulls me to it like a magnet, where it is not my choice but He just knows what I need to learn, see, hear, observe or be a part of to understand how to live it out just a little more at a time.

With all that being said, being missional, living missionally, learning what it means to be missional - it never takes a day off. It is a discipline that I'm trying to intentionally develop - so that means that I'm constantly learning things, being reminded of things, seeing things, and being broken for my county, my city, my campus to know Jesus.

On Friday night it happened again and I've been meditating on something and soaking it in. While prayer driving Fullerton after work, I discovered there were a lot of run down style motels that people live in from week to week because they can't afford anything else. This broke me and I want to see this redeemed by Jesus - but what it also did was teach me a missional insight and a view into Orange County culture as we know it.

See, as someone born and raised in the OC - when I travel somewhere I typically will hit freeways for most of my travel. This is something that is unique (as far as I know) really to California and So Cal. And when we hit these freeways we get taken high above our cities, surrounded by cement barriers that block the city from us so we cannot see our city until we get off our freeway and hit our destination - enabling us to go from point a to point b without ever blinking an eye. As I was driving home from Fullerton after seeing a different part of Fullerton after prayer driving - I hit the 57 freeway like I always do. When Jesus decided to show up, break me and teach me something about being on mission.

See, when I drive on freeways I get into my own little bubble and can ignore the outside world - all I have to deal with is the cars around me. I don't see the city or the people. But when I drive surface streets, I get to see the city, I get to see the people, and see what the city looks like - see it's culture. So, what He showed me, tried to illustrate to me was the importance, for the sake of living out the mission, to drive on surface streets as much as possible.

By doing this, it will enable me, us to see the brokeness of our cities and the places that Jesus needs to come in and radically reform. Because, it is far too easy for me to just go from point a to point b. Now, I know that for an Orange County person that is tough because it might take us longer. I'm not saying this is something we must do all the time - as we do have to go from point a to point be sometimes.

But what if, what if we get some spare time and instead of hurrying home we drive surface streets home? What if we drive past those places, communities that we normally drive past and see the city as Jesus sees it? What if we take the time to drive our cities and ask Jesus to give us missional eyes for our cities? To ask Him while we are driving to open our eyes, show us how He sees the cities and how He wants us to be involved in changing our cities, in reaching our cities?

That is my what if? That is just one of my journeys through living life in missional eyes - what are yours?

September 1, 2009

The Fall Semester has Begun - 1 Week Ago

Hello world. My name is Jonathon and I have something to confess to you.

I am a college student, and what that means is my life is way too busy for my own good. But that is not what I have to confess, what I'm here to confess and get off my chest is that I'm an "achiever" (according to stregnthfinders 2.0), therefore if I enjoy being busy, putting a lot on my giant metaphorical plate and seeing the way that God will move through me just showing up and being on mission with all that He has given me to do. I really do not know what life or college would be like without being so busy. Sometimes I wonder and dream about not having to work - but then I remember how much I enjoy working, because working is mission; working is ministry.

So, for the next 15 weeks I will be taking 12 units, working about 20 hours a week, interning about 10 hours a week @ RockHarbor with Campus Life Groups, leading a CSUF Campus Life Group, being a RockHarbor Middle School Leader, RockHarbor Middle School Life Group Leader, and being able to be on the ground floor of one of RockHarbor's new campuses that will be launching shortly. By the way I still have homework too.

This is the way I roll, I really do not know any other way then to be crazy busy - and somehow this is how I function and this is the way God has wired me. Gotta work with the size plate one has been dealt and it just so happens that my plate is really big and deep and able to handle incredible amounts. Pray for me though, because firstly it is never about me but always about Jesus; and secondly, occasionally I do get tired - haha.

P.S. Coming shortly will be my reflections on this summer and what I learned and what I'm looking forward to happening this fall!!!