Mission Alive's Theological Orientation
Some specific theological orientations of Mission Alive are . . .
- Mission of God (Mission Dei). Mission flows from the character and nature of God. God is calling and sending us (church planters and leaders of partnering churches) to be instruments of his mission. Jesus said to his apostles, “As the Father has sent me, I am sending you” (John 20:21).
- Kingdom of God. As Christ’s representatives, we give up our own purposes and aims as we strive to align our values with those of the kingdom of God (Matt. 5:20). We can then proclaim with authenticity the good news of the reign of God (Acts 8:12). We then, as messengers of his kingdom, see searchers and unbelievers “open their eyes and turn . . . from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God, so that they may receive forgiveness of sins . . . .” (Acts 26:18). Like Jesus we pray: “Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven” (Matt. 6:10).
- Incarnation. God calls us to model the incarnation of Christ. As Christ emptied himself (Phil. 2:3-8) and “dwelt among us” in “flesh” (John 1:14), we must live among the people we serve as we personally and compassionately minister.
- Spiritual Formation. God calls us, messengers of his kingdom who embody his mission, to be transformed into his nature. Only then are we able to nurture Christians and seekers to also walk personally with God as they are transformed into God’s image (2 Cor. 3:18). New Christians are nurtured to become holy as God is holy (1 Pet. 1:15-16) and to love as Christ first loved us (1 John 4:19). This transformation takes place both within the littleness of House Churches (cell groups) and in the bigness of a worshiping, celebratory community.
Mission Alive's Ministry Tasks
The three major tasks of Mission Alive are to recruit and equip church planters, provide church planter support, and partner with churches to plant churches.
- Discover and Equip Church Planters. God has gifted the leaders of Mission Alive with the ability to discover church planting candidates through a wide variety of relationships and cast vision for Christian service. These church planting candidates are evaluated in a Discovery Lab to determine whether they have the gifts and abilities to successfully initiate and nurture a new church; nurtured in a Theology Lab to develop missional understandings, formed by scripture, which guide and shape all practices of ministry; and equipped in a Strategy Lab with practical tools of ministry to develop a contextual working plan to plant a growing, Christ-formed church.
- Provide Church-Planter Care. Church planters should not work alone but within a network of support, encouragement, and equipping. Mission Alive works with partnering churches to support and resource church planters, their families, and the developing church. This support occurs through weekly coaching and mentoring; monthly Planter Forums (meetings of church planters); and an annual Church Planters’ Retreat. A Partnering Team is formed to help advise and guide the church-planting family. A Partnering Team is composed of a coach, spiritual directors, representatives from the Partnering Church and Mission Alive’s Director for Equipping.
- Partner with Churches to Plant Churches. God has gifted leaders of Mission Alive to connect with churches who desire spiritual renewal and creative outreach to their communities. Churches experience amazing spiritual renewal as they participate with Mission Alive in the joys and struggles of planting churches. They rejoice to see first-hand examples of reaching the unchurched and learn to apply patterns of community connection, journeying to Jesus, disciple-making, and leadership development to their own churches. Mission Alive believes that one of the best ways to renew old churches is by participation in church planting