If the first step into the mission of God is showing up, then the second is to begin paying attention to the people around you. What are they passionate about? What are their hopes? What are their fears? What are the areas in their community that are broken? What are people worrying about? Who are the people that are trying to fix the brokenness of the world? Who are the people who know these people?
These people are called, “persons of peace.” In every mission setting we need to find a person of peace.
“From Troas we put out to sea and sailed straight for Samothrace, and the next day we went on to Neapolis. From there we traveled to Philippi, a Roman colony and the leading city of that district of Macedonia. And we stayed there several days. On the Sabbath we went outside the city gate to the river, where we expected to find a place of prayer. We sat down and began to speak to the women who had gathered there. One of those listening was a woman from the city of Thyatira named Lydia, a dealer in purple cloth. She was a worshiper of God. The Lord opened her heart to respond to Paul’s message. When she and the members of her household were baptized, she invited us to her home. “If you consider me a believer in the Lord,” she said, “come and stay at my house.” And she persuaded us.” (Acts 16:11–15, NIV)
Paul and Luke (at least Luke, we don’t have an exhaustive list), show up at the river. They were going to pray but there were a number of women there. So they begin talking with the women and a woman named Lydia comes to faith (and so her whole household is baptized). Paul and his companions stay on with her.
They have found a person of peace.
Lydia was a saleswoman. She would have been known and connected in her town. As a saleswoman she would have access to marketplace and other places in the community that an outsider like Paul would not have had access to. Lydia was able to connect Paul with others.
Who are the Lydias in your community? Who can help connect you with others?
I remember when we launched Doubt on Tap, Mike and Tom were persons of peace for us. We had met them at our local coffee shop and invited them to join us at Doubt on Tap. They in turn began inviting everyone in their sphere of influence. They provided Doubt on Tap with amazing momentum.
A person of peace of mission critical.
After you show up, find a person of peace.
Originally published at danielmrose.com.