Jesus Creed

Jesus Creed


5 “Ls” in Missional Love

posted by xscot mcknight

I’ve mentioned this in a previous blog or two, and I’ve had enough conversations with pastors and others who’d like a brief listing of this, that I’ve decided to make a separate post of it so it will be more readily available. I can never remember which post it was on.

There are 5 “Ls” in missional love: genuinely missional followers of Jesus and communities of faith have these 5 “Ls.”

1. They look and see needs.
2. They listen to their community and hear what people are saying about needs.
3. They learn about needs and their community by studying and researching.
4. They link to those needs as individuals and communities in order to bring the Kingdom.
5. They act locally to meet needs.

There are 5, not just one or two, “Ls” in missional love.



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Jamie Arpin-Ricci

posted August 15, 2005 at 2:06 pm


Scot,While I have greatly appreciated the concise, yet profound nature of the 5L’s of Missional Love, I wonder where the global commitment comes in? The Church, by its nature, informed by the Eschaton, is a global, multicultural church that exsist together. Where does this fit?Peace,Jamie



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Scot McKnight

posted August 15, 2005 at 2:09 pm


Global is part of it, of course. But we have to think globally and act locally.



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Jamie Arpin-Ricci

posted August 15, 2005 at 3:16 pm


Hey Scot,Thanks for that. Not sure I am sold on it, though, as I have found that global acting (even short term) has the power to engage the mind and provide proxis motivation for the local. Thanks again!Peace,Jamie



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Scot McKnight

posted August 15, 2005 at 3:42 pm


Too much Wendell Berry in me, Jamie?Here’s an issue for me: I see lots of folks quite happy to do missionary work in Kentucky or in Haiti or in Africa who don’t even know the names of their neighbors. I don’t want to make this an either-or, but folks who walk by their neighbor on the road in their quest for the pure experience down in Jericho are missing something.



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Jamie Arpin-Ricci

posted August 15, 2005 at 5:09 pm


Hey Scot,Now you’re speaking my language! Exactly! That is why, prior to doing any missions outside North America, all our students are required to live and minister in our inner city here. Thanks for the clarity.Peace,Jamie



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Trevin Wax

posted August 16, 2005 at 6:06 am


Scot,I think you’ve hit the nail on the head about thinking locally before globally. In my experience living in Romania and doing missions for several years, I observed many teams who came to do “global” mission work, but were really motivated by selfish reasons. Of course, there were fantastic teams that did great ministry too. But the phrase so common to many American mission trips “I feel we get so much more out of it than they do” is sadly too often true.Peace,Trevin



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