Thursday, May 20, 2010
He said to them, "Go into all the world and preach the good news to all creation."
I met a woman today who didn't know who Jesus was. "That dude with the tan skin and beard?" she questioned.
No clue who he was. No clue what he wanted. No clue what significance he had on world history...much less her very own life.
I was kind of surprised by this response from her. But more so, I was surprised by the fact that I had known her for 4 months and only now just realized that she had never had any exposure to God's love, for she had never had any exposure to Jesus.
I guess it's hard to fathom that there are people in America who have grown up clueless to the gospel of Jesus Christ. I mean, I can understand the Bedouins living in the deserts of Africa or the tribes in the jungle of the Amazon...but, central Illinois?
It was a sobering moment. But it got me thinking. There is a reason that Jesus specifically commanded the disciples to first go to Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria, and then to the ends of the earth. I used to think that Jesus chose some random towns to send off his disciples. But there was a strategic plan in choosing those towns in that particular order. Sharing the gospel had to start locally before it went globally. It had to start in Jerusalem before it could move on.
Because, you see, the gospel spreads like wildfire. It has to start in the center and spread outward if it is going to have the greatest effect on the world.
Where is the center?
Wherever you are today.
That's all it comes down to. Today. The town that you are living in, the street that you are walking on, the job that you are working in....the people surrounding you on a day to day to day. It has to start with them.
It's great to have a heart for overseas mission, but in all reality, that heart is dead if it hasn't reached individuals across the street. To burn with passion for the world, you must also burn with passion for your community. To burn with passion for the gospel, it has to start with the small steps. It starts with opening your mouth. It starts with taking the risk. It starts with letting go of all assumptions and wearing your heart on your sleeve.
I shared the gospel with this young woman today. We spent a long time chatting about Jesus and answering questions about who He was and why He came.
There was no miraculous transformation at the end of our chat. No crying, no hugging, no saying the "sinner's prayer". Nothing dramatic. But there was one small seed dropped on fertile ground. One small seed that had never been there before. One small seed that now has a chance to take root...to grow.
I may never know what happened to this woman, or the conversation that we had today. But one thing I do know- Jesus was introduced to someone for the first time. "Anne, this is Jesus. Jesus, this is Anne"
And from what I know of Him, He's a pretty charming guy....I think He can take it from here.
Lessons Learned by Debra Fileta at 10:21 PM