Our challenge grows out of Matthew 5:13-16:
13 “You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot.
14 “You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. 15 Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. 16 In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.
Mission – We exist for the sake of the cause for which Christ died – the kingdom of God. We live our lives in the world for the sake of the reconciliation and healing of woundedness all around us – we are ministers of Shalom. We embrace the call to leave our comfort zone and be in places of darkness.
So, here is the challenge!
1) On at least two occasions during the challenge, ask someone if you can pray for them and then go ahead and lead a prayer for them (out loud) on the spot. The goal is for us to have eyes and ears attuned to the needs of those with whom we interact. This practice will demonstrate openness/boldness in talking to others about spiritual matters and will demonstrate compassion for those around us who are hurting or struggling.
2) Think about ways that you may have lost your saltiness – ways in which you are no longer adding flavor or preserving what is good. Are there areas in your life in which you have “conformed to the pattern of this world” and in doing so have sacrificed some of your Christian witness? Identify one such area, and seek to rectify it this week.
3) Try to view the world this week through the lens of “shalom.” Tune in to where there is wholeness and where there is brokenness around you. When you identify brokenness, ask God how you could be a minister of his shalom in that situation.
4) Be the brakeman/brakewoman. When you are in situations going somewhere they shouldn’t (escalating anger, anxiety, lewdness, and so forth), be the one to tap the brakes. 5) Be salt and light – interject something that will make the situation better. Be a peacemaker. Bring joy – have people walk away from you in a little better shape than when they walked toward you.
Never forget that these challenges do not really develop anything in us on their own. They simply create space for God to develop us and shape us more into the likeness of Christ. Let any attempt you make to live out this challenge be rooted first in prayer. God is the one that completes in us the good work which he started.