A Mountain of Mustard Seeds

 “The kingdom of God is within you.” (Luke 17:21)

“The Spirit of the Sovereign LORD is on me, because the LORD has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners.” (Isaiah 61:1-2)

For twenty-six weeks, we’ve been talking about the needs of the world and how God’s purpose for us is to live our Christianity by reaching out to meet the needs of the world. And I have to say that I love how Stearns pulled it all together at the end. So, let me quote from him, briefly:

“This gospel that we have been given—the whole gospel—is God’s vision for a new way of living….And it calls for us to join Him in saving the world that He loves so much. The power of this gospel was announced by Jesus in a synagogue in Nazareth, when he made an audacious claim—and an outrageous promise that the good news would be preached to the poor and that justice would be restored. The poor would be helped by the rich; the powerful would protect the powerless; the hated would be loved; the brokenhearted would be comforted; the oppressed would be liberated; the downtrodden would be lifted up. God’s kingdom was going to begin on earth through the changed lives of His followers, and its hallmarks would be forgiveness, love, compassion, justice, and mercy. There would be no Jew or Greek, slave or free, male or female—all would be equal in God’s eyes. This was the essence of the good news of the gospel, the whole gospel.” (p. 276)

To help you understand why this excerpt resonated so deeply in me, let me share another quote. This one isn’t from this book, but from Waking the Dead, by John Eldredge.

“Christ could have chosen any one of a thousand other passages to explain his life purpose. But he did not. He chose this one; this is the heart of his mission. Everything else he says and does finds its place under this banner: ‘I am here to give you back your heart and set you free.’”

Don’t wonder why it’s so important for us to share the love and hope of Christ with the world. This is the reason. As Christians, we are to be as Christ was. If this mission in Isaiah 61—to bind up broken hearts and set people free—was His mission, then it is also our mission. Who among us hasn’t needed to have a broken heart healed? Who among us hasn’t needed, at one time or another, to be set free from fear or doubt or shame? If we are walking with Christ and He is doing this in us, then we must do the same with others and with the world.

In the words of Rich Stearns: “We are the revolution. We are God’s Plan A … and He doesn’t have a Plan B.”

This post is part of our regularly scheduled Wednesday discussion about Richard Stearns’ book, The Hole in Our Gospel. This week’s discussion is about Chapter 26—A Mountain of Mustard Seeds. If you’ve written a response to the chapter, please visit my co-facilitator Jason Stasyszen’s site Connecting to Impact to link up. I invite you and encourage you to jump into the discussion whether you’ve read the chapter or not. Your thoughts are important to us!

About Sarah Salter

Comments

  1. Good post Sarah. I had forgotten about JE’s quote in his book. Reminds me once again what my mission should be…and it is not self-serving. Thanks for your thoughts and thanks for allowing me to be a part of this discussion for the past 26 years…I mean…weeks. :)

  2. Sarah Salter says:

    Bill, a friend of mine (who hasn’t taken part in our discussion) randomly forwarded me the quote from John Eldredge. As soon as I read it, it was like the pieces of the puzzle just came together and I saw the big picture. (Don’t you love it when that happens?) Thank you so much for taking part in this discussion. Your faithful has encouraged me and your insights have challenged me.

  3. Amen.

  4. His mission is our mission. If we would live our lives that way, everything would change. Good stuff–thank you Sarah.

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