Today’s Scripture: 2 Timothy 4:1-5
1b I give you this charge: 2Preach the word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage—with great patience and careful instruction. (NIV)
During my time in Harrisonburg, VA while attending JMU, I took on the difficult and sometimes uncomfortable task of “church shopping,” only to come to the conclusion that RRCB is like no other. Some churches have rock bands instead of an organ, others offer a communal communion cup, others don’t believe in female ministers, and some believe in evangelism before all else.
I’ll admit that the word evangelism makes me uncomfortable. I found myself appreciating the lesson often given by my Sunday school teacher, and later high school principal, Ed Pruden. He often spoke of two coworkers, one of whom went to church every Sunday, the other of whom said that they would go to church only when they saw a difference in the way that their friend led their life.
The ministers of our church often quoted St. Francis of Assisi – “Preach the gospel always and if necessary use words.” I have tried to follow this line of thinking and the W.W.J.D. bracelets popular when I was younger that urged me to keep in mind, “What would Jesus do?” Although I do not feel that evangelism will ever be one of my spiritual gifts, I try to be an example to my non-Christian friends of how a Christian life can be different (and hopefully brighter) than that of our non-Christian counterparts.
The scripture passage emboldens us to “preach the word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage—with great patience and careful instruction.” This Lenten season, may we think of ways in which we can show others how living a Christian life can brighten one’s path.
Lord, help us to show others what it means to be a Christian. Jesus gave us the ultimate gift of life everlasting, and showed us that each one of us is loved beyond comprehension. May we show this type of love and forgiveness to others every day. Amen.