Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Where do we hear the Word of God

I saw a church sign the other day and when I read it I really couldn't believe what it said. Now let me preface this with the fact that this has nothing to do with that church, and everything to do with "The Church". Us the body of believers. Here is what it said:

"Come Sunday to hear the word of God preached"

What really sort of struck me to the core is why do people have to go to a church building on a Sunday to hear the word of God preached? Now, I know that being apart of a local bible believing church is a must for discipleship to happen, and hopefully they are preaching the word; but why do we as a society (for the majority) look to Sunday the way a trucker looks at a truck stop. We come in on an empty tank, get filled up, maybe get a cup of coffee and then go back to our every day living for self life. We are the salt and light of the earth, every person we have any sort of meaningful relationship with should hear the word of God preached as we sharpen one another.

Jesus told us to go and make disciples. Point blank, that is what we are here for. He didn't say go and invite people to church (which is a great thing) so they could hear the word preached. He said as we go we are to make disciples, and apart from the word this is impossible. The way I see it, if the body of believers begins to truly take hold of the great commission then people would come to church on Sunday to become equipped to preach the word of God. Not just to hear it.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

My Birthday & Ephesians 6

On Monday I turned the big 29.  After a wonderful day with so many people telling me Happy Birthday I began to think about our responsibility as followers of Christ.  The basis of this thought began when I downloaded the Passion White Flag album.  I was cleaning up around then house and then a Louie Giglio sermon came on related to Ephesians 6:19:

"Pray also for me, that whenever I open my mouth, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the gospel...."

And I began to think. When was the last time that I shared the gospel....and did completely without fear.  One of my birthday presents that my wife got for me was to have an old tattoo of mine covered up with a new one.  This was really important to me because I got the first cross on my arm before I surrendered my life to Jesus.  I got a cross because I thought it was something religious.  After giving my life to Christ I have always wanted to have it updated to be more reflective of what the cross truly means.  If you look on my twitter feed you can see the updated picture.  Anyway, after getting this I have had a few people at my office ask about it; and even in talking to people who I would consider friends at work there is a fear with explaining why.  

As an American Society we focus so many times on fearlessly proclaiming stuff that has no eternal value.  When I look and had 35 or so people tell me happy birthday on Facebook (and don't get me wrong, I love the fact that I have that many people who care about me) it just re-iterated the fact that this culture points us to proclaim the things of the world.  We will fearlessly tell someone Happy Birthday, or Happy Anniversary, or Merry Christmas because we feel that the relationship we have with that person (whatever level it may be) is strong enough to warrant a Happy Birthday comment.

However, we struggle as followers of Christ to fearlessly proclaim the mystery that is the gospel.  Does our relationship with Christ not warrant at least telling someone about Him?  Do we not see the value in knowing Him?  I am not able to answer the questions for everyone but I know how it made me think.  If at any point the opportunity presents itself for me to share the gospel, and I don't, whatever the reason may be I am putting a greater value in that.  We tell our loved one's happy birthday because we care about them and want to make sure they realize we care about them.  Jesus tells us to love our neighbors......shouldn't we be shouting the mystery of the gospel from the rooftops?  Shouldn't we be proclaiming the Good News with every moment of our lives, in both word and how we live our lives?  Our love for Christ, if we are really grasping it comes down to one thing....."Go and make disciples of all nations...." and you cannot do that without loving our neighbors.  

Please understand, I am not saying we should not tell our wives Happy Birthday, I am just challenging us to remember the importance of "fearlessly making know the mystery of the gospel".  I will close with this story.  When I was in L.A. back in the spring break of 2010 I sat across a park table from an elderly Armenian man who listened to our team fearlessly proclaim the gospel to him. His response was simple.  "Why? Why has no ever told me about this Jesus?"  Now, we didn't have an invitation right there and he come to the Lord, but that moment in time will live with me forever.  I bet his friends had told him Happy Birthday on his last birthday, but not one single follower of Christ had fearlessly proclaimed the mystery of the gospel to this man.  Whenever we open our mouths we should let the Holy Spirit guide our words because we never know when He is at work.