180 Day Challenge

Something has been laying heavy on my heart for a little while now. It might be because of all of the horrible events in the news as of late, but after today’s sermon, I felt that now was the right time to express it.

We are all called as Christians to spread the message and speak the word of gospel to others. That has always been something that I’ve not been extremely comfortable with.  I knew that I lacked the scholarly knowledge to really answer all of someone’s questions. If challenged, I might not know what to say or worse, say the wrong thing.

I still feel unprepared for this task, although I’m getting better at it. I’m not alone in this, there are several others that I know that love God and love the word, but feel uneasy about spreading his word to others. After doing a study on James in our Adult Bible Fellowship class, I realize that this can be overcome with God’s help. For in James letter to the early Christians “If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.” (James 1.5 NIV) I like that, especially the “without finding fault” part. Believe me, I know I have them.

Often times we are worried that in our efforts to spread the good news, we will be met with cynicism or even anger. We all, regardless of faith, have a desire not to be judged. Again I will call upon the book of James “Not many of you should become teachers, my fellow believers, because you know that we who teach will be judged more strictly.” (James 3.1 NIV) We might worry that if we attempt to talk to someone about Jesus, that we will be judged more strictly, so we cowardly fail to do so.

On the other hand, several of my friends have a very strong faith and have shared the word in other ways. Some of them have the scripture memorized and some don’t. I’m learning that you don’t need to have “all your ducks in a row” before you start ministering to someone where they are. In fact, we are called to get out of our comfort zone to do the Lords work.

It has been said that it’s easy to be a Christian where I live and that’s true. It is my belief that I was guided here to be encouraged in God’s love, because it’s what I needed for his purpose. I may not know what the purpose is yet, but I’m sure one day it will be made plain to me.

Great story so far, where is the challenge?

So here is the challenge, you may know someone hurting; maybe they themselves don’t even know that they are hurting. If you know someone lost, someone who has turned away, whatever! Try to minister to that person where they are. Let them know that God not only loves them, but is passionately running after them like a parent does for a child. The older I get the more I understand why God is called “our father” who art in heaven.

Challenge that person to come to the Lord for 180 days and see if it doesn’t transform their life. Challenge them to be open minded, listen and actually hear the word. Be there for that person encouraging them. Offer to drive them to church, a bible study, fellowship, or other activity where the focus is on Christ. Love thy neighbor by being an active participant in their life. Show them God’s love and see how it impacts their life.

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