Summary: God’s Mission is twofold: "To seek and to save the lost and make disciples of all people groups."
God’s Mission & Vision for the WVCC
There are many indicators that this will be a year of growth and outreach for the Willow Vale Community Church. Many of you are involved in prayer triplets that will meet ten times between December 16th to March 23; a hundred days of prayer emphasis.
In God’s Word we have the promise, “If my people who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sins and heal their land.” (2 Chronicles 7:14)
As I was praying and planning the message I believed God wanted me to preach for this second Sunday of the New Year the passage in Number 13 came to mind. God’s mission for the Children of Israel was to take a bold venture and conquer their homeland of Canaan. Their millison is similar to the mission God has for us as a church.
God’s mission for us is to take a bold venture and reach out in love to our community and city. We are to take over more and more of Satan’s territory in San Jose, CA.
Turn to Numbers 13 beginning with the first verse.
“The Lord said to Moses, ‘Send men to explore the land of Canaan, the land I am giving to Israel.” Twelve men, leaders from each tribe of Israel were sent.
Moses told the twelve spies “to go spy out the land, are the people there strong or weak, few or many, what kind of land do they live in is it good or bad. Do their towns have walls or are they unprotected? How is the soil? Fertile or poor? Are then many trees? Enter the land boldly, and bring back samples of the crops you see.”
So they spied out the land they found grapes so large and heavy two men had to carry one cluster. They spent 40 days spying out the land and brought back their report.
The ten spies reported: “The land flows with milk and honey. But the people living there are powerful, and their cities are fortified and very large. We even saw giants there, the descendants of Anak. We felt like grasshoppers next to them, and that’s what we looked like to them! We can’t go up against them! They are stronger than we are!” (Summary of Numbers 13:18-33)
Caleb and Joshua gave their report: “Let’s go at once to take the land, we can certainly conquer it!” (Numbers 13:30)
From this passage I want to mention three things that will help us carry out God’s mission for and vision for the Willow Vale Church.
Our primary mission is to carry on the work started by Jesus: “To seek and to save the lost and make disciples of all people and language groups.”
To carry out God’s mission during this coming year we need:
I. Vision to See as God Sees
The ten spies looked at the people of Canaan from a human viewpoint. No way could they defeat giants. Even though they had 600,000 fighting men relying on human effort and wisdom they could not defeat the gaints in Canaan.
They quickly forgot their history of how God had delivered them out of bondage in Egypt where they had been slaves for 430 years. They were asked to take a bold venture by taking God at His Word. The vision of God’s miracle working power had faded from their lives.
“Where there is no vision people perish.” (Proverbs 29:18) When God is left out of our planning the future does look bleak.
• We don’t have enough money!
• We are too small!
• A recession is just on the horizon!
• We have too few workers!
Caleb and Joshua trusted God. They declared that God was with them. “We can certainly do it.”
Vision is seeing what is possible if God blesses.
Jesus gives us His vision and mission to continue the work he started while on earth: “to seek and to save the lost and make disciples of all language groups.”
With adequate vision we are never satisfied to just play church. We are not willing to year after year embrace SOS, Some O Same O. With vision we are willing to do whatever it takes to carry forth the mission of Jesus.
A study of the history of the people of God in the Old and New Testaments reveals an interesting fact: the well-being of the believing community was directly proportional to the obedience to God’s mission for them. When the people of God have a sense of mission things go well and the church is strong and healthy. When the church becomes introverted and loses its desire to minister in Christ’s name to those who are in need, problems set in.