Happy Wednesday, wonderful friends and readers. Today I’m going to borrow from Rebekah’s video blog, and share the scripture (from Ephesians) she used in her “We’ve been here 7 years!” reflection this morning. I recommend that you read Paul’s words out loud, and literally hear the power of these wonderfully crafted words of love and affirmation:
Isn’t that an amazing affirmation and testimony?
It reminds me of a recurring conversation I have had with many individuals and groups, at retreats, conferences, and here at home. It’s the question about evangelism, or sharing our faith. People ask me how it works and what they are supposed to say.
I think Paul can help here, as he gets on his knees and he prays that the following things will happen:
- That God will make us strong through his Spirit;
- That Christ will dwell in our hearts through faith;
- That we become rooted and established in love;
- That we grasp how wide and long and high and deep Christ’s love is;
- That we know this love that surpasses knowledge;
- That we become filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.
Get filled up, then spill over!
In other words, Paul is pretty confident that the most effective way to share the love is to be so filled up with love ourselves that it spills out and gets all over everyone else; and to be so charged with life that life becomes irrepressible and contagious; to be so saturated with light that we cannot help but shine and thus defeat the darkness!
In other words, don’t take a seminar on handing out tracts, or “the 4 spiritual laws”, or “how prove God to an atheist”, or any other formulaic approach. Instead, spend more time with Jesus yourself, make worship a vital part of your daily routine, “pray without ceasing”, and simply live as an authentic follower of Jesus.
It is not pat answers this world needs so much as authenticity. Your transformation becomes their invitation.
Jesus – I say all the time – is God’s invitation. We, by extension, are a living invitation to, as John wrote, “life.” So the most important question becomes (if we really say we want to see more people accept the Good News of Jesus), is there anything in the way we live in response to Grace that tells the story of authentic life?
Derek has published seven books in the past decade (you can find them at https://www.amazon.com/Derek-Maul/e/B001JS9WC4), and there’s always something new in the works.
Before becoming a full-time writer, Derek taught public school in Florida for eighteen years, including cutting-edge work with autistic children. He holds bachelor’s degrees in psychology and education from Stetson University and the University of West Florida.
Derek is active in teaching at his church: adult Sunday school, and a men’s Bible study/spiritual formation group. He enjoys the outdoors, traveling, photography, reading, cooking, playing guitar, and golf.