The first Christian missionaries were empowered with the Baptism of the Holy Spirit on the Day of Pentecost, just a few days after the ascension of Jesus into heaven. Jesus told them it was coming: “You will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth” (Acts 1:8 ESV). With that empowerment, the great missionary movement was launched into the earth. We are the descendants of that movement, and we continue to send forth missionaries as a part of that movement.
Interestingly, the work of the missionary doesn’t begin at the end of the earth; it begins in Jerusalem. That means it begins right here, right now. The mission field begins when we walk out of our home, our church, and into our neighborhoods, towns, workplaces, and schools. In this sense, we are all missionaries. A student’s mission field is his or her school, and the church’s responsibility is to equip each student for the work of the ministry in this mission field (Eph.4:11-13).
Calling students to the commitment of a Campus Missionary is an important part of Every church must empower every student to reach every school.that empowerment. This summer, we are redefining the term “Campus Missionary” on a national scale. The heart of the Campus Missionary will remain the same—to make Jesus known on the school campus and beyond—but we are simplifying the definition so that more leaders and students can identify and join with this movement. For years, a Campus Missionary was defined by five core behaviors: Pray, Live, Tell, Serve, and Give. Three years ago we simplified that definition to the three Scriptural principles Live, Love, Lead: Live on purpose, Love out loud, Lead to eternity. This summer we will make it even simpler: A Campus Missionary is a student who shares Jesus at school. Several great new resources will also be released to help leaders and churches equip students in this journey of missional discipleship.
Youth pastors and leaders, to take your missional discipleship to the next level, join the 2016 Exponential Leadership Cohort. More information can be found at reachtheschool.com/exponential.