Every person breathing has a set of preferences.
Have you noticed this?
Consider how many variations of coffee, colors of cars and potential hairstyles that you encounter on any given day. People have preferences. People love preferences. People are vocal about their preferences.
I am one of them.
There are a lot of football teams in the NFL. The best one happens to reside in Seattle (this is more of a FACT than a PREFERENCE).
As a follower of Jesus, I also have preferences. I prefer certain types of music at church. I prefer specific pastors and preachers and their communication styles. I prefer specific authors and commentaries for biblical study. I like the comfort of the structure that I am used to during a weekend gathering.
But there is a challenge when my PREFERENCES become more important to me than the MISSION.
[quote align=”center” color=”#999999″]But there is a challenge when my PREFERENCES become more important to me than the MISSION.[/quote]
As a follower of Jesus, I am welcomed to join Him on HIS MISSION. He commissioned his followers (see Matthew 28:18-20) to continue the work that He set in motion. Jesus invites ordinary people to lay aside their personal agendas and preferences and join Him in bringing hope, grace and transformation to a world in desperate need of Him. This can’t happen built on the individual preferences of many. Instead, as the Body of Christ, we take on His Mission as the main thing – and keep it front and center in our hearts and lives.
When it comes to the areas of accomplishing and living out the Mission of Jesus, we must be CLOSE FISTED.
When it comes to specific preferences, we must learn to be OPEN HANDED.
We should hold most tightly to the mission of Jesus. As His church, this is our focus. It is dangerous when we allow areas that we should be openhanded about, become the very things that we cling most tightly to.
Here are a few ways to discover if we are holding more tightly to our Preferences than to the Mission of Jesus.
How does this best serve ME and what I WANT?
How does this best serve OTHERS and what they NEED?
Preference has the potential to make opinion ABSOLUTE.
Mission makes opinion OPTIONAL.
Preference can tend to focus us on DIFFERENCE and DIVISION.
Mission focuses us on UNITY and SERVING.
What about you?
What have you discovered about MISSION > PREFERENCE?
I’d love to hear your thoughts. Feel free to comment below!