Journal: July 27 2014 (Sunday)

So, I didn’t get a chance to post a journal blog yesterday so I’m doing one today for yesterday. I’ve been taught by God on some stuff such as sharing the gospel and going to Him in prayer for the needs of the brothers and sisters.

Yesterday, I had the honor and privilege of explaining and unpacking Jesus’s atoning sacrifice to a non-believing friend of mine. He’s not a believer, but he’s mega interested in Christianity and finds it intriguing. We spent about an hour or so over Facebook unpacking it, and it was very enlightening and successful for both of us – he, for learning more about Jesus, and me, for being able to relate these truths in an understandable way. A friend of mine even privately contacted me later and told me that she was impressed with how well I related the information (no glory to me, all the glory to God).

Now, let me dive into the important part: how God worked in me through this. Now usually, I am very reluctant to share the gospel with others because I worry I won’t do it good enough or relate it well and because I’m averse to social awkwardness and potential conflict. But, in an attempt to be more of the man that God wants me to be, I deliberately shoved those feelings aside yesterday and dove into it. Yeah, it felt a bit awkward (because that’s me), but it was beneficial and soul-enriching. I felt a joy out of sharing the gospel. And even better, unpacking the gospel opened it up more for me to. For the first time in a long time, I really witnessed – in the deepest core of my heart – the beautiful and lovely scandal and limitless mercy of what Jesus did, dying on the cross and taking all of our sin and shame on Himself for us, so we could know a God that we never could have ever deserved to know. It was so beautiful and such a gift, and I’m honored that God used me to teach my friend more about Himself. To be used by God is the greatest honor anyone can ever aspire to, in my opinion. 

So what’s the lesson in this? Don’t shy away from sharing the gospel. As Paul said, be ready to preach the gospel in season and out of season (2 Timothy 4:2). That means when in ideal circumstances and in non-ideal circumstances. Be ready for both. Be ready to preach it at a church youth group that your pastor’s let you speak at, and be ready to talk about it to a stranger on the bus where you only have literally sixty seconds before they step off the bus and out of your life forever. Be ready, and do it.

I also think God’s taught me another thing in the past couple days. This is about praying for the Body. In various times, I’ve had to pray for people I love and care about who are going through stuff, or who are doing fine but just could use some prayer. Brothers, sisters, this is one of the main things we should be doing for each other. It’s not the only thing we should be doing, by any means, but it’s one of the primary things we should be doing. God is God, and He can do infinitely more than we could ask or imagine, and plus we are considered His royal heirs (Romans 8:17). Consequently, we can and should approach God boldly and confidently, knowing He’ll reach down and execute change and rescue in the lives of our brothers and sisters, and those whom we know who don’t know God. Don’t be afraid to pray for others, and don’t be reluctant to, and pray boldly. And when you pray, expect God to answer. That’s what God taught me about prayer last night. Because He does answer, and we shouldn’t be surprised when He does. And though we expect it, we should always be filled with awe and praise when it does happen.

That’s it for now. Grace and peace.

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