Life-changing . . .
It’s an adjective that is overused and underestimated. Many times in my life I’ve described something as life-changing, but in total honesty only the moment was changed. According to dictionary.com the term life-changing is used to describe a moment that alters a person’s life or circumstances in a substantial way.
The last few years, I have been going through the motions of being a Christian and youth pastor’s wife. Yes, I still cared for the teenagers in our group, and yes I still attended church, but I had lost my passion and become tired, complacent, and checked out in ministry. There were many times I wished I could stay home like others do when they just don’t feel like going to church, but I couldn’t.
I needed a substantial, life-changing experience.
When my husband asked if I’d like to spend my vacation time at a youth event, I’ll be honest, I would have said no if it hadn’t been in Denver where I could spend some momma/son time with my oldest.
On the surface, everything looked great. I worked with my husband on Wednesday nights and sang in the praise team Sunday mornings. I was constantly involved in something church related, but I found myself growing resentful.
You see, I was serving out of obligation and loyalty, but didn’t realize it. I didn’t see my attitude towards ministry work- until this past week- that is.
What I experienced at a youth conference in Denver was truly life changing for me. You see, I watched as nine teenagers, four adults, and 450 people from groups in 21 states come together in surrender to God’s Great Commission to, “go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit” (Matthew 28:19). Now I know how to share the GOSPEL, the acronym I know like the back of my hand.
G – God created us to be with Him
O – Our sins separate us from God
S – Sins cannot be removed by good deeds
P – Paying the price for sin, Jesus died and rose again
E – Everyone who trusts in Jesus alone has eternal life
L – Life with Jesus starts now and lasts forever.
I’ve been around long enough to “fake” my way through the dialogue of soul-winning, but I’ve never really put it into practice. Besides, what impact can I make by sharing my faith beyond reaching a few others. Oh, how wrong I was, not only in my unwillingness to step out in faith, but in how I was looking at the whole picture.
It is not my job to reach the entire earth one by one, but what if?
What if I didn’t just reach my one or two or three?
What if I took my one or two or three and I spent time with them?
Time in the word?
Time in prayer?
Time discipling them?
Discipling simply means to teach or train. What if WE, not just me, took the time to teach others to do the same?
As Lecrae writes/raps in “After the Music Stops“, we create disciples who make disciples. If I reach one, then we reach one, then all four of us reach one and so on, oh, what an impact we could have.
We learned a lot about discipleship using the four-chair discipling method detailed in a book by Dann Spader. We learned that it is our job to reach the lost and not throw them to the side of the road hoping they will survive. It is our job to teach and pray for/with them. It is our job to bring them alongside us and train them to make disciples so that the cycle continues.
So here is my challenge to you: Ask God to place people on your heart for you to share the gospel with. Pray that God will open their hearts and minds for your conversation. Actively pursue them by having those conversations with them. Next, when you feel God has opened the door, Share the gospel and your testimony with them. Show how your life has changed because God is in it. Lastly, spend time teaching them how to reach others for Christ.
You have a choice to make. Do you want to stay complacent in the cause for Christ or do you want to join the movement? Young, old, or in between, God will use you where you are with what you have. All you have to do is let Him.
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