Summary: Teaching our our mission statement.
*Have different kids read the backs of the leaders t-shirts
Tonight I want to talk to you guys about this simple yet powerful sentence. “Living to grow, serve, worship, and share!!” This sentence is the mission statement of Breakaway broken down into one sentence. If you have ever wondered what the purpose of Breakaway is, why this program exists, this sentence tells you. If you have ever wondered why I am a youth pastor and why I do what I do, this sentence tells you. This sentence has quickly become very important to me and I hope that it would become important to everyone in this room as well. I’d like to take the time tonight to explain this sentence to you and look at it part by part.
“Living to” – There are a lot of people today who would say that they believe in God. There are a lot of people who would call themselves “Christian.” Some call themselves this solely because they have grown up in a family that claims to be “Christian.” Some call themselves “Christian” because they celebrate “Christian” holidays like Christmas or Easter. Some others call themselves “Christian” because they attend a church that claims that title. Some others claim this title because they follow all the rules their “Christian” parents or pastors tell them they have to follow. These things in themselves are not what make someone a Christian.
I have a shirt that boldly proclaims, “Reject religion, embrace Jesus.” Being a Christian means having a relationship with Christ which becomes a lifestyle. It means that we are constantly living our lives, trying as hard as we can, to become more like Christ. As we live out our relationship with Christ there are four components that we need to constantly be paying attention to.
The first is “grow.” In Matthew 28:19-20, Jesus gives his disciples a final commission before he ascended to heaven. He told them, “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you.” He is telling his disciples to go and tell people about Him. Once people have heard and accepted Christ they should be baptized into the family of God. In other words he wants people to make a public confession that they are giving their lives to Christ. Then what does he tell his disciples to do with these people? He tells them to “teach them everything I have commanded you.” That is growth!
As Christians we always have more that we can learn about God or His Word. Whether it is simply reading a new passage in the Bible, studying it more in depth, or applying the passage to our lives. I think two of the best ways to grow is by reading the Bible and by being in a church or at Breakaway regularly. To help you guys read more of the Bible I want to strongly encourage you guys to sign up and buy a One Minute Bible. It is a baby step towards growth that will make a major impact on your life.
We always have things in our life that shouldn’t be there that we need to work at removing. We always, because of our sinful natures, need to get better and grow more and more into the likeness of Christ. I have ways that I need to grow just as much as you all have ways that you need to grow. Part of being a Christian is recognizing the need we have to grow to become more and more like Christ throughout our lives.
The second component that we need to constantly be paying attention to as we live out our Christian lifestyle is “serve.” Part of growing to be more like Christ should lead us to this second component. As you look at the life of Jesus you will quickly notice that Jesus lived his life to serve God and the people around him. He was always willing to do the work that God wanted him to do and he was always helping the people around him. In Matthew 22:39, Jesus tells a group of religious leaders that the second greatest commandment is to, “love your neighbor as yourself.” This is service!
Service means putting other people’s needs first. In the Bible, one of the greatest acts of service is when Jesus washed the feet of his disciples. Some of you may remember doing that at Breakaway a little while ago. Jesus, even though he was God; even though he was the teacher and master above the disciples; put the needs of the disciples before his own. He loved them so much that instead of telling the disciples to serve Him, he instead served them. That is why we do Salt and Light in Boston; to give you guys an opportunity to serve. That is why we have youth Sunday’s; to give you guys an opportunity to serve within the church. Those are only a couple of many ways that we can serve the people around us. Part of being a Christian is loving the people around us and serving them with our lives.