I remember the day when I found a word that accurately defined reformation. The word is "flourish." It is a word used by a group of men and women who had invited Jan and me to join them in a strategy session unpacking the subject of cultural reformation. We discussed how to fulfill the Great Commission, where Jesus instructed his followers "to go and make disciples of all the nations" (Matthew 28:19). That day my eyes were opened to previously unimagined possibilities.
What made this group so unique was that they actually possessed the collective wisdom, finances, and technologies to accomplish their mission. This was heady stuff because it carried the potential to direct the course of nations. Defining the goal of their endeavor was critical, or it could be highjacked by wrong motives and aim at a destination of results far from the heart of God. The purpose of the group was to positively affect a nation and its institutions to such a degree that it would begin to reflect the love of God no matter the social status, ethnicity or political persuasion of the recipient. They wanted to be the hands and feet of Jesus' prayer "on Earth as it is in Heaven."
This kind of reformation will seem impossible to those who look to human-inspired political solutions or the desire to make everyone look, talk, and live the same way. True reformation is not about creating our preferred version of an earthly theocracy. It is about creating an environment where God's love is expressed by seeking the highest good for others.
God's timing is impeccable. When our culture seems to have reached its lowest point of fatigue and distrust, the Lord is preparing to reveal templates for a reformation that will lead individuals and nations toward a hope-filled future. Committing our lives and resources to a mission that allows all people and all nations to flourish under God's loving hand will help us decide where to invest our energy and resources in the days to come. All is not lost, no matter how sideways our world seems at this moment. God is illuminating a path toward a future we cannot yet imagine.
"May the Lord cause you to flourish, both you and your children" (Psalm 115:14).