In a broad sense there are two types of Christian leaders: Those who listen primarily to human voices and those who focus their hearts on listening to God. The first try to navigate competing human preferences, expectations, and desires with the goal of satisfying everyone. The second acknowledge that only God in his Holy Spirit can form us into his kingdom people. The first seek answers below—in the world; the second above—in God. That is the purpose of Mission Alive’s Theology Lab: to teach Christian leaders to move from theology to practice by hearing the voice of God.
For us, a theology of mission, like the rudder of a boat, guides the mission of God and provides direction. My wife is fond of remembering how our children frequently wanted to “drive” when we took them on pedal-boats. At times they were so intent on pedaling, making the boat move, that the rudder was held in an extreme position, and we went in circles. Realizing their mistake, but still intent on pedaling, they would move the rudder from one extreme to the other so that we zig-zagged across the lake. When Christians operate without the foundation of a missional theology, their lives and ministries tend to zig-zag from fad to fad, from one theological perspective and related philosophies of ministry to another. A theology of mission, like the rudder of a boat, provides practical direction for Christian ministry. Continue reading