Sunday, October 10, 2010
Sweet, sweet peace
Here of late, I'm able to ignore the desperate cries heralding the news that Christians have a responsibility to preach the gospel message. I know the criers mean well, but it's not for me. Been there, done that. I don't preach/teach the gospel anymore, I simply serve cake and coffee.
Now don't get me wrong, I'm not saying that EVERYONE should sit silent and just serve cake and coffee. On the contrary. God had in mind a job for each of us to do. We, who are in Christ, can be liken to the many different body parts of a body. Each part has its job to do, and many times the jobs are very different. Both very necessary, but very different. Paul even admonishes us to stop bellyaching if the 'other body part' isn't doing as good of a job as 'my' part of the body. We're not all hands, nor should we strive to be. We're not all mouth pieces, so no need to strive. Sure Paul preached, but he was compelled to do so. (I Corinthians 9:16). He didn't put that compelling desire in himself; God did. Paul couldn't have 'not' preached if he wanted to. So, no need for the criers to panic because I don't preach the gospel to everything that moves.
I don't have that desire, and finally, I'm okay with it. God knows who's ready to hear His wonderful Gospel of Jesus. From within this gospel lies the message of Eternal Life through Jesus Christ our Lord. If you're compelled to share with your family and friends, do so. However, don't fret if no one seems to listen to you. Results are never our business, but rather God's. It's finally dawned on me, after having several family members take the Gospel and throw it back in my face so to speak, that maybe I wasn't meant to share--at least not with the family. Another family member, a year or so later, shared this same gospel message with the same family members, and it was the best news since sliced bread. I'll admit, at first I was hurt. This young man was using all the analogies and illustrations that I had used, but now all of a sudden it was gospel.
It doesn't bother me as much now. By not engaging in discussion, there are a few things I miss out on: having to think on my feet; being ridiculed; arguments; being taunted; being half responsible for making others feel uncomfortable for engaging in the above behavior. Instead, I am able to: sit quietly, and just observe the people around me, whether right or wrong, try new recipes as time allows for the meal, have a clean house before the study starts. All these things help make me relax.
"But what about the gospel?" you may ask. "Shouldn't you forgo the feelings of comfort for the continuing of the message? What about those family members that still need to hear??" No problem. It's all been worked out. You see, I don't have to witness to family members. If anything, I've learned that it serves no purpose for me to open my mouth. It only serves as a springboard for hostilities. The beauty of it is, God has another mouthpiece and its being used quite effeciently. Remember the verse about the different body parts? I've finally realized that my job isn't the mouth piece. Maybe it's the hands that clean house, cook a small treat, makes fresh coffee, so that when the speaker speaks, the guests can listen in comfort. It's all about us each doing our parts as God compels us; not as we try to compel each other.
So what about you? Are you doing that which God called you to do, or are you trying to do what a pastor, friend, mentor is trying to call you to do?