Often, parents and teachers ask their children, “What do YOU want to be when you grow up?” In a world that is increasingly self-seeking, self-centered and self-absorbed, the answers are consistently more egocentric --- “a movie star,” “a rock star,” “a dance star.” Even within the church, this present generation is fixated on obtaining fame, wealth and pleasure. But shouldn’t we be encouraging our children’s willingness to surrender to God’s plans for their futures? Shouldn’t our question instead be, “Oh, I wonder what awesome plans God has for your life! When you grow up, will you do whatever GOD wants you to do?”
In her new book, THE MISSION-MINDED FAMILY: Releasing Your Family to God's Destiny (Authentic, July 2008), author, teacher and missionary Ann Dunagan shows parents how to combat the influences of the “Me Generation” by giving readers the tools to revolutionize their families into ones dedicated to fulfilling God’s will and potential, instead of their own. In the first chapter of her book, Dunagan quotes David Shibley as he clearly addresses the current crisis within the church.
“We whine, ‘I just want to know my purpose; I’ve got to reach my destiny.’ We race all over the country to attend ‘destiny conferences,’ and we devour tapes and books on ‘reaching your full potential….’ Even cloaking our self-centeredness in Christian garb and jargon cannot cover the nakedness of this cult of self that has infested much of the church…. How can we ever hope to discover our purpose in the earth with little or no interest in His purpose?”
Dunagan, who also wrote THE MISSION-MINDED FAMILY, brings the same perspective to what it means to be a mission-minded family. Her goal is to equip today’s godly parents to train our next generation to make a powerful impact for Jesus Christ by directing their focus outward. “Every day, approximately 150,000 people die; the majority of these people are not saved, and far too many have never even heard God’s Good News of salvation,” says Dunagan. “How can we sit back and hear the Gospel again and again, while many are still waiting to hear it for the first time? Today’s Christian families desperately need to remember that our purpose in this world involves so much more than what we can attain for ourselves. We’re here to reach the lost.”
THE MISSION-MINDED FAMILY includes suggested activities for families to participate in together as well as resources to help families develop the desire to become more missions-focused. Dunagan discusses the need for families to balance and prioritize their everyday lives and delves into what a family’s finances would look like if they were focused on missions. Families who read and practice principles from this book will receive a rekindled closeness as they participate in ministry together.
“In a mission-minded family, there’s a God-infused energy,” Dunagan explains. “There’s a focus on God’s worldwide purpose and a passion for the lost. There’s a spiritual depth and hunger that reaches beyond the maintenance mode of cultural Christianity.”
Packed with motivating missions stories, hymns and quotes, THE MISSION-MINDED FAMILY is a quick resource tool with examples of missionary family heroes, ministry ideas, exciting prayer projects and even practical tips for international travel. Filled with passionate inspiration, THE MISSION-MINDED FAMILY will be picked up again and again, read aloud and used as a reference for years to come.
THE MISSION-MINDED FAMILY: Releasing Your Family to God's Destiny © Copyright 2011 by Ann Dunagan. Reprinted with permission by Authentic. All rights reserved.