Harvest Boston


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Originally uploaded by smh00a.

I apologize that Chrissy is not in the picture to the right. We seriously don’t have one together in Boston. We’ll remedy that on Spring Break.

My wife Chrissy and I have been training to make disciples in Boston, Massachusetts, beginning in the summer of 2006. We’ll travel to Boston with Steve (Sr) and Lynn Holt over Spring Break to finalize housing, neighborhoods, etc. We believe God has set us aside for simple, relational “evangelism” (I even hesitate to use that word, with all its connotations of door-knocking and soapbox preaching) in New England. Our hope, however, is that the Lord will use the Holts to facilitate the planting of a vibrant family of Jesus Christ within close reach — culturally and geographically — of every Bostonian. That means every diverse neighborhood, people group, and family system has the opportunity not only to hear the gospel of Jesus, but to “throw in” with a community of Christ-followers not unlike themselves and committed to Kingdom expansion.

Is this a lofty goal?

You bet.

But so was Christ’s commission Matthew 28.

But the Great Commission has also been used to do a lot of destructive things in the name of Christ. I think a more appropriate model for our ministry may be in Luke 10:

“The Lord now chose seventy-two other disciples and sent them on ahead in pairs to all the towns and villages he planned to visit. These were his instructions to them: ‘the harvest is so great, but the workers are so few. Pray to the Lord who is in charge of the harvest, and ask him to send out more workers for his fields. Go now, and remember that I am sending you out as lambs among wolves. Don’t take along any money, or a traveler’s bag, or even an extra pair of sandals. And don’t stop to greet anyone on the road. ‘Whenever you enter a home, give it your blessing. If those who live there are worthy, the blessing will stand; if they are not, the blessing will return to you. When you enter a town, don’t move around from home to home. Stay in one place, eating and drinking what they provide you. Don’t hesitate to accept hospitality, because those who work deserve their pay. ‘If a town welcomes you, eat whatever is set before you and heal the sick. As you heal them, say, ‘the Kingdom of God is near you now.'”

Our aim is not to baptize as many people as we can or even to plant a church, but to be a part of the in-breaking of the reign of God wherever we are — work, school, home. We want to serve people, declaring to them the coming of a “new order” — the exciting coming of the kingdom of God — and invite them into the exciting existence of living fully into that kingdom. A kingdom life that values justice, service, sanity, spiritual disciplines, hospitality, community, non-violence, and mission, among many other things (those virtues, of course, overlap in significant ways).

We believe this kingdom life will be good news — “gospel” — to a widow neighbor, a newspaper editor, or maybe a MBA student in Boston. May it be good news for us all again, even today.

——————–

As of 7 a.m. Thursday, we are headed with a group to the World Mission Workshop at Harding University. We will have the opportunity to tell the above story at least once corporately, and numerous times individually. We also will meet with a Harding team headed to Boston next summer to talk and pray about the ways we may cooperate in God’s mission. Please pray for us as we’re on the roads. If you have any questions about who we are or what we’re about, feel free to leave us a message in the comments section or e-mail me at smh00a@acu.edu. You all are appreciated. Blessings this weekend.

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