By Christie Lothamer (’98, ’02)
“What’s the dream in your heart?”
I love to ask people this question.
Most people have never been asked, so I clarify. “I mean, What are you passionate about?”
The next question is, “What problems in the world really move your heart?” It doesn’t usually take long for most people to think of a few things.
Then, I follow it with “What do you possess, that combined with your passion and those problems, could cause you to make a difference in the world?”
Possessions are a little harder to pinpoint, but we all have them. Think of it like capital or resources. This may be relationships, intellect, talents, finances, spiritual gifts and physical things.
Pair your passion with your possessions, and see if it doesn’t lead you to a dream of restoration for the problem tugging at your heart.
“For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things He planned for us long ago.” Ephesians 1:3
Have you ever wondered, how is it that long ago God planned good things for us to do—even before we did them? I get it, He’s all-knowing—but what if it’s simpler? What if the unique ways He created us leads us to play our part in the gospel restoration of the world?
I believe God hard-wired each one of us for our part in His mission. Perhaps we just need a little inspiration to be who He intended us to be? Asking those three “P” questions is a great tool to inspire people to live on mission for God.
There’s only one problem. The tool is great, and people love learning about their unique dream, but that doesn’t automatically move them to action. Why? It’s time to own the fact that in this postmodern information age doesn’t automatically lead to innovation. There is a missing piece—imitation!
You can’t BE what you can’t SEE! Our culture here in the United Kingdom desperately needs leaders and role models, so they have something to imitate!
So the Passions, Problems, and Possessions questions are really for us, as leaders, in this season!
My husband Jeff and I imitate missional living for our church in the collision of our passion for coffee, our problem with isolation in our neighbourhood and our possessions of skills in leadership, inspiring people, entrepreneurial vision and networking. This led us to open a non-profit Community Coffee Shop.
We’ve been on a journey for the last two years, taking a group of disciples with us. The vision we have to share our relationships with our neighbours is coming true. But more than that, many disciples of Jesus’ are seeing an imitation of missional living that starts with being who God made them to be, listening for the dream He put in their heart and giving it a go!
When disciples do mission authentically from the passion and problems in their heart, evangelism becomes an authentic exchange of relationship. One person who’s found good news authentically passes along the good news that gives them hope for living and motivation to make the world a better place!
-Christie Lothamer (’98, ’02)
Lothamer has been the keynote speaker at CSU’s LYFE Women’s Conference. She and her husband Jeff live with their three children in Bicester, England, where they serve with Greater Europe Mission to win, build and equip disciple makers in the church in the UK.