In Mathew 28:16, Jesus instructs His followers to go out and make disciples of all nations. This was the last recorded directive by Jesus after His resurrection, and therefore, it holds great significance in the church. It is a tenet in Christianity that emphasizes missionary work, evangelism, and baptism.
Christians everywhere recognize this scripture as the Great Commission. It is not a mere suggestion, but rather a command to the church to put their faith into action and preach the Gospel to the world, with Christ’s promise that He would always be with them in their mission.
As a Christian, you may not have the capability to travel around the world to fulfill this commandment, but you can still honor it by being a missionary in your own community. Here are 5 ways how you can do this…
1. Be a Missionary by Loving Your Neighbor
Like the Great Commission, love is another commandment that Jesus gave His disciples to follow. In John 13:34, we are instructed to love one another just as Christ loved us.
At first glance, loving people in a fallen world with the same unconditional love demonstrated by Jesus might seem impossible. But through the power of the great helper, The Holy Spirit, we are able to do all things. According to Jesus, a neighbor was anyone we came in contact with (Luke 10:29).
We can show unconditional love to anyone we meet by simply helping to meet to their needs, regardless of their culture, race, religion, or nationality.
2. Be a Good Listener
A huge part of practicing love and being a missionary involves listening to others with the intent to understand. A lot of times we are so eager to share the Gospel that we don’t pay attention to what others are saying and instead bombard them with solutions. If we are to bring more people to the fold of Christ, then active listening is a skill we must develop.
3. Share Your Story
We can follow the approach of the Apostle Paul and share our testimony with people in three phases: Our life before Christ, how we met Christ, and how our lives are progressing with Christ now. Like Paul, we may have a difficult past, but instead of burying it, we should embrace it and use it to bring honor and glory to God. When people learn about our previous struggles and how Christ helped us overcome them, it displays Christ’s love and power of His salvation to them.
4. Create Margin in Your Life
Life is full of unexpected moments and encounters. While we can certainly host and plan for certain events and interactions as missionaries, we need to create some room for the unexpected. Like the Good Samaritan, we should be ready to adjust our plans accordingly to help others and glorify God.
5. Share the Gospel
At its core, being a missionary involves sharing the Good News of Christ with others.
As Christians, we should engage others in a bold and positive way so that they’re not surprised when we share spiritual topics with them. Matthew 5:16 captured it best. Our end goal is for people to see our good works and honor our Father in heaven. This can only happen when we formally acknowledge Christ as the source of our love and salvation.