A couple of years ago, I was investing some time into a young man that was struggling to get started in youth ministry. As he had gained a few opportunities to teach or preach, his presentations were unfocused, hesitant, distracted, and quickly diverted to stories or diatribes on issues that had no bearing on either the passage or message. Frustrated, he sat before me as I looked over some paperwork for him, trying to help with some wording before he sent it in to a church considering him for a position. I decided to ask the young man about his view of discipleship, and what his plan would be if the church actually did hire him. There was silence. He had not really thought through what might happen if the answer was yes. The idea of being “in the ministry” was more attractive than the role itself. Unfortunately, many Christians approach our walk with Christ in a similar fashion. The idea or title of being a Christian, of knowing we get to go to heaven, is far more attractive to us than the job description that comes with accepting Jesus as our Lord. Too many of us, including those in ministry, would prefer that someone else does the work of “ambassador” whilst we enjoy the benefits of said government office. Missional living people are experiencing one of the greatest joys of being in Christ, which is getting to truly know Christ through His word.
In order to help the young man further, I asked him, “What is it that you are doing in your life with Christ that you could pass on to a younger group of believers, as well as some who haven’t believed yet?” Again, more silence. “Well, I go to church, and I love Jesus?” “That’s wonderful!”, I responded,”but is that the extent of the Christian life for you? What disciplines are in your life to help you deepen in your faith?” “I guess I don’t know what you mean”, he said. “For starters, tell me about when you are in the Bible, reading and studying God’s word?”, I asked. The young man’s response revealed a great part of the mystery. He said, “I study the Bible when I have a sermon to prepare, but I don’t really have time otherwise, and I don’t really enjoy reading." This young man had unfortunately been robbed of instruction at some point to reveal how much more there is in the Scriptures than what we might "enjoy reading." What a tragedy!
Missional living people agree with the prayer of Christ in John 17:17, “Sanctify them in Your truth; Your word is truth.” The power of God’s word is found in a much deeper sense than that it is a “Good Book”. Regardless of reading levels, skill in language, understanding of history, or ability to memorize, the word of God remains both an instrument of developing faith and the nature and character of Christ in a human life. It is the expression of God’s will, and the description of God’s being. It is the outline of God’s plan and the history of God’s people. The Son of God, Son of Man, Christ Jesus, even at the tender age of 12, was an astonishment to the Pharisees and scribes for His understanding and even questions about the Scriptures. Timothy was commanded to study in order to show himself approved, a workman that did not need to be ashamed. David delighted in it both day and night, memorizing it to help keep himself from sin.  The Apostles devoted themselves to prayer and to the ministry of the word of God.  Their mission was not cast by personal ability, resumes, pedigree, or position. It was empowered by the Holy Spirit, explained and expressed through the word of God, from the oldest words they had to the letters they would write. The word of God was their weapon of warfare against the spiritual foes of darkness in the heavenly places, as was it Christ’s, and ours still today. The beautiful truths of Scripture are the keys of victory over and against the strongholds, deceptions, failures, and insecurities that struggling believers are searching for, which is one of the many reasons our common enemy works so hard to keep us from it.
Missional living people have come to see that it is the desire of Christ that we know Him better and continue to become more of His representatives on earth, bearing His name and light. We do not grow in what this means by sitting in silent meditation for the remainder of our lives. The Scriptures themselves bear witness that our mission is a going mission, an onward and forward call to remain active in service even when waiting on the Lord to act or answer. We move when He moves, and we understand that all the more when we see the manner in which He, the Lord Who does not change, has revealed Himself to others over time.
There is a heresy in the works amongst many so-called "forward-thinking" missiologists that would label the worker who is dependent on God’s word as antiquated Bible-thumpers and irrelevant goodie-goodies, but I contest that they have forgotten that “faith comes by hearing, and hearing the word of Christ.” Paul, the untimely born apostle, a man who made himself relevant to all to people that he might win some, would have been quite so labeled as well. He openly declared, “For I am not ashamed of the Gospel, for it is the power of salvation.”  Hebrews declares, and we know by the experience of it that “The word of God is living and active, sharper than any two edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart."  Missional living people have seen, as Proverbs declares, that every bit of it “proves true”. While are no longer strangers and aliens to the household of God, we are in this world.  It is not our home in its current state, but will be when the Lord, “makes all things new”.  We cannot enjoy or have our joy made full regarding the future hope of believers apart from delighting in what God has revealed to us about these things in the word.
Missional living people take the goals of our mission from Scripture itself.
We do not need to re-create the mission and vision of Christianity upon the earth, but like Christ, receive our mission from our Heavenly Father, and carry it forward as He prescribed. One cannot be in agreement with God’s mission on earth and in disagreement with God’s message. In fact, many a man or woman who strives to somehow endear themselves to the people of this world apart from using the Scriptures, seeking an entrance or a foot in the door to their hearts, hoping to some day, and over time introduce a snippet here and there, a portion or reference, gauging the response and testing the waters to see if it might be examined further- far too many such men and women bear little to no resemblance to those we find as heroes of the faith in the Scriptures. They are unfortunately duped into operating their ministry by fear and the approval of man, but not the will of God. 
Missional living people are persecuted but know they are not abandoned because of God's word.  While persecution ravages homes in foreign lands, placing men and women in prisons, ending lives on earth and stripping away possession from believers, what is it that the suffering seek but the word of God? The Spirit recalls to mind the things read before. Groups of believers, sometimes whispering through walls, do not spend their days attempting to re-enact their favorite films or rehearsing the lyrics of the world’s most famous tunes. No, in such moments these trifle things of earth give no comfort or rest or peace, but it is God’s word they seek, adding line to line, remembering whole chapters as their minds remain devoted to it, and finding not only strength to carry on from this, but that the Word Himself is very present. 
Missional living people understand that the word of God is not the tool we use to accomplish our will, but the tool whereby God accomplishes His will in us. It has been misused, misapplied and abused since the day it was first quoted by Satan in the Garden of Eden. Many would-be Christ-followers have a debilitating sense of small ability to comprehend the word or a daunting fear to approach the Scriptures, but when the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, He was beheld as full of GRACE and truth. Surely, the Scriptures have been used within many a condemning and judgmental message by those who were certainly not living a missional life, even though they had memorized the pages of the Bible, for they had not learned God’s heart behind them. Take heart. While some would lead you to neglect it, God calls you to it. It remains available still. The word of God, the Scriptures you have known since you were a child, able to lead you to salvation,  with all of its challenges to our affections to the stuff of earth, with all of its labels as being politically incorrect, and with all of its line-in-the-sand stances, has not changed from being the sincerest of love letters to humanity. It is your book of God’s unbreakable promises. It reveals our truest condition apart from Christ and God's immutable plan to redeem mankind to Himself for eternity, and that is why missional people are and must needs remain the people of the word.