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How to Lead a Missional Church that Expands God’s Kingdom

 

Every believer has a role in the Great Commission. George Miley, in his book Loving the Church… Blessing the Nations, states, “I would prefer, rather than seeking to call forth individuals as missionaries, to call forth every believer (1) into God’s mission and (2) into the role God designed for him or her.”13 All of us ho believe in Christ are chosen with a divine purpose, “But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light” (1 Pet 2:9, NKJV).

Living missionally every day. Not long ago, someone asked some questions to Bob Roberts about his missiology. Roberts said, “It’s simple. Just grab what God has put in front of your face. We want to be missional. We study it and desire it. Yet, I don’t know that’s what will get there. Instead, missional is the way we live.”14 Jesus’ theme in the Gospels was the good news of the Kingdom of God, which was presented clearly by Matthew, Mark, and Luke. Luke records Christ’s own words to describe His purpose with “but He said to them, ‘I must preach the kingdom of God to the other cities also, because for this purpose I have been sent.’” (Luke 4:43, NKJV).

 

The Missional Leader

Leadership is about influencing and empowering people to advance God’s kingdom. What a great opportunity we have today to be part of transforming people with the gospel. God has called us to be good stewards, and we need the amazing ministry of the Holy Spirit to become effective leaders. “A leader may be born with potential to lead, but it is God who processes that leader so that the potential is realized.”15 It is essential to start with us because God is interested in us as His creation. We only can give to others what we have graciously received from God.

Believers in our congregations are desperate for good examples to follow. “The characteristics that are to be evident in the life of a candidate for gospel ministry relate every bit as much to who the person is as to what spiritual gifts he is to exercise.”16 One of the main roles of pastors and leaders is to help people to discover God’s given spiritual gifts. What are the characteristics of a missional leader? The following are some characteristics of the missional leader:

Missional pastors encourage their members to build healthy relationships with their neighbors.

Depends on God every day. One of the biggest challenges that we have today is the lack of dependence on God. We pray, but we do not believe. We need to depend more on God and less in our own efforts. In addition, a missional leader is empowered by the Holy Spirit. The missional leader is able to recognize his/her limitations and wait on the Lord patiently. Therefore, our daily relationship with God is vital to stay connected with God’s heart for the nations. “Fundamental to all Christian leadership and ministry is a humble personal relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ, devotion to him expressed in daily prayer, and love for him expressed in daily obedience.”17

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Category: Ministry, Winter 2011

About the Author: Victor H. Cuartas, D.Min. (Regent University), has been involved in pastoral ministry and church planting for nearly twenty years. He is Assistant Professor of Practical Ministry and Global Missions at Regent University in Virginia. Victor serves as director of research for COMHINA, a missionary movement that mobilizes Hispanics in the United States and Canada for ministry to unreached people groups. He is the author of Empowering Hispanic Leaders: An Online Model (Church Starting Network, 2009) and Capacitando Líderes Hispanos: Un Modelo En Línea (Wipf & Stock, 2010). He is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in Oxford, U.K. through Middlesex University & Oxford Center for Mission Studies.

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