A New Mission for the Burnt-Out Mom
In a recent "Stuff Christian Culture Likes" post at Beliefnet, humorist Stephanie Drury poked fun at signs—positioned so that they can be read only when people are leaving a church building or parking lot—that read, "You Are Now Entering the Mission Field." They remind churchgoers to share God's love with the people they encounter "out in the world." In the act of leaving the property, Christians are being sent out, as it were, on a mission.
When I was growing up, the word mission was used exclusively for those self-sacrificing believers who packed their bags and moved to a hot and sometimes unpronounceable locale. (Remember trying to read the words "Irian Jaya" as a kid?) Missionaries sent annual prayer letters to supporters, cards which pictured large "quivers" of children whose names were taken from the Old Testament, never shortened into nicknames and often began with the same letter of the alphabet. "Christmas Greetings from Daniel and Esther … and Jacob, Jonathan, ...1