What is a Missionary?

October 29, 2009


A great question with many answers.  Its an especially good question considering every follower of Jesus, if they’re really following him, ought to live in like [missionary] form.  So if all Jesus followers are missionaries then again, what is a missionary?

Reading more of Len Sweet’s So Beautiful he mentions this definition: “A missionary is someone who lives on someone else terms.”

Amazingly someone has made a game called Missionaries and Cannibals where you shuffle the two groups between shores all the while keeping the cannibals from eating the missionaries.  My offering for a new game: How many faulty ideas about all parties can you find?

Amazingly someone has made a game called "Missionaries and Cannibals" (click picture to play) where you shuffle the two groups between shores all the while keeping the cannibals from eating the missionaries. My offering for a new game: How many faulty ideas about all parties can you find?

What a great way to view myself as a Christian.  What a great way to view Jesus’ coming to earth, being wrapped in flesh and living among us.  I picture Jesus in the womb or lying on Mary’s lap crying for his next meal and I think, “Wow!  That is meeting people on their terms.”

The Gospel didn’t change–again look at Jesus!–but everything about it was brought to bear in a place that formerly could not see, hear or touch him.  And he so fully dwelt there, that they could not only see him, but kill him.

Please choir, don’t think I’m preaching at you.  I’m really searching for how our missionary identity in Christ would shape my life as well as those around me.

(For more on the Christian’s missionary identity in Christ check out Soma Communities’ page and audio on the subject–really good stuff!)

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2 Responses to “What is a Missionary?”


  1. Something interesting to think about. I’m not sure many of us hold onto the idea that we are all missionaries, even if we never leave our house (our children would still need the gospel). Thanks for the post!

    • joewulf Says:

      Thanks Matt! I know the idea that we’re all missionaries is one I have been returning to and growing in these last ten months–and I am a missionary in the I-do-this-for-a-living sense! Ironic I know, but the journey goes on…


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