Embracing the Ordinary

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As we try to go out and share the message of the love that God has for people and the price Jesus paid for them on the cross, one of the main things we need to keep in mind is that our prayer life needs to be strong as well. We not only need to pray for these opportunities to share the love of Christ, but we also must show authentic love towards people as well.

As we’ve gone through these lessons over the last several weeks, have you begun to look at relationships a little differently than you did before?

Have you thought about the salvation of friends and neighbors? Have you begun to pray for God to give you an opportunity to have a Gospel conversation with these folks?
These are things we need to be considering. If we genuinely care about people, then how can we not share the Gospel story with them or in the least be praying earnestly that God would give us the opportunity to be able to have this conversation with them? If we aren’t the ones to be used to share the Gospel with them, then we need to pray that God would open the door for another Christian to be able to share the story. We need to be at least either planting the seed, watering the seed, or even harvesting the seed. We need to look how we can be actively involved in winning people to Christ.
As we are faithful in doing our part, so will God. So will the Holy Spirit. We don’t need to fear rejection when we share this story. You are only sharing. God is the One who will do the convicting. God is the One, through the Holy Spirit, who will do the saving. We are merely the ones who will present the story. It is up to the people we share with how they respond to the moving of the Spirit.
Philippians 2:5–8 ESV
5 Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, 6 who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, 7 but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. 8 And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.
We have talked about the Trinity and how they are all part of God, but yet separate. Jesus is part of the Trinity. When He came to earth, He took on the form of humanity. He humbled himself to come and live among us. He took on the form of a servant, bringing salvation to sinful man. He became like us so that we could have someone who lived the same life we did, but chose to follow the will of His Father and do the right thing all the time. Once again, He humbled Himself to serve us by even dieing on the cross for us.

The sacrifice Christ made by living among us was huge.

In heaven, Jesus was the Son of God, sitting at the right hand of His Father. He left a place of perfection to come to a world filled with sin. He came to be a servant to the least.
I think one of the things we need to realize as Christians is when we share with people the story of Christ, we don’t have to be perfect in order to do it. We don’t need to make ourselves into some lofty example of what a Christian is. We need to lay out the same example Christ did. Number one, we need to come at this life as being servants to others. We need to express real love towards them, the same way Christ did for us. We need to make sure people see that from us.

Christ humbled himself even to the point of giving up His life for us in one of the most humiliating ways there was to die at the time.

The cross was saved for the worst of criminals. Jesus followed the will of the Father all the way by allowing Himself to be put on the cross for us. He had done nothing wrong. We were the ones who put Him there. He was the One who expressed true love to us by sacrificing Himself to pay the debt of our sins. Not only our sins, but everyone around us if they are willing to listen to the story you will tell them and be sensitive to the Holy Spirit while you are telling the story. The sacrifice we make is putting ourselves out there as a Christian. We must be willing to put ourselves in the role of servant and not the one who is leading. I think that if you are doing this right, you aren’t the one who is leading the conversation. When this is done right, it is the Holy Spirit leading the conversation while you are being sensitive to His leading and listening to the person you are sharing with.

Does this mean you are always going to have a “victory?”

Does it mean the person is always going to become a Christian?

No. Again, the important thing is you have either planted a seed, watered the seed, or cultivated the seed. If you get to reap the seed, then you are the one who has more than likely finished the work that was put into this person’s salvation by many others. You give God the glory and thank Him for all He has not only done through you, but the many others who were involved in the process of this person coming to know Christ.
John 13:34–35 ESV
34 A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. 35 By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”
John 15:10–11 ESV
10 If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and abide in his love. 11 These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full.
These verses once again emphasize the point that we must show genuine love to the people we are trying to share Christ with. Notice, that Jesus isn’t only telling us to love other people, He is also telling us to love one another, our fellow Christians, people of our church. If we can’t do this, if we can’t express love to each other, if we can’t genuinely care for each other. If we can’t forgive each other. If we can’t have patience with each other. I can make this list to go on and on and on. So, here is the point.

If we aren’t expressing love to each other and being different than the world we are trying to share the love of Jesus with, then why should anyone want to become a Christian?

Am I asking you to be perfect? Absolutely not. You are looking at someone who sins daily. What I am asking you to do is to realize when you do sin, you need to be repentant. If your sin involves hurting another person, then you need to go to that person and ask forgiveness. We need to make sure we are all doing this. When we do this, we are demonstrating to the world what the Church should look like and what makes us different than the world.

When we ask for forgiveness or we grant it, we are demonstrating what Christ has done for us.

By expressing true love for each other in the church, people will know we are different. Even when we have been wronged, and we still forgive the person. Even when we have been deeply hurt by someone, we need to know when we show forgiveness towards that person, it is demonstrating the forgiveness that Christ gave to us. We were the ones who messed everything up. Yet Christ went to the cross for us.

Is there anything which is going to happen in our lifetime that is going to compare to this sacrifice of love that was made for us?

When we are able to do this with one another and express the love for each other that Christ had for us, can you imagine the beacon in a community that this would create? Our joy and love for each other when we see each other when we get together would be a tremendous testimony to our community. When you love a group you are in, you want others to experience that joy as well. And when people come into a place where joy is felt, they will be able to feel it. This isn’t something you can fake. It has to be real. People will be able to feel it and sense it.
1 Timothy 2:1–4 ESV
1 First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, 2 for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way. 3 This is good, and it is pleasing in the sight of God our Savior, 4 who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.
Paul is instructing us to pray for all of those who may have power over us. Kings and all who are in high positions, we must pray for them. Of course for each country, these roles mentioned in scriptures take on different forms for each one of us.
I want to put a challenge out to our people. In the political arena we find ourselves in right now, you are either very happy with what is going on, or you are very upset with what is going on. The challenge is this:

Any time you find yourself talking about something political, good or bad, I want you to spend that much time praying for the leaders of our country.

Who are our leaders? Anyone with political power, whether they are in office or not. Read what the rest of verses 2 & 3 say.
1 Timothy 2:2–3 ESV
2 for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way. 3 This is good, and it is pleasing in the sight of God our Savior,
And the last part of this section of scripture says:
1 Timothy 2:4 ESV
4 who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.
God desires for all to be saved and to come to knowledge of the truth.
So the prayers we offer up for our leaders is so they also can come to the knowledge of the price that was paid for their sins as well. Our prayers will not only play an important part in this, but will also be used to bring others to Christ as well. We are to pray for all people.

God wants all, not only part.

Not only the ones we agree with. Not only those who look like us. All.
As we finish this series of lessons on evangelism, I have a few questions for you to ponder.

What hangups keep you from believing that being yourself is the best method of sharing Jesus with those who are lost?

What are some ordinary moments your experience in daily life that God might be wanting to use as a springboard for drawing others to Him? What is your responsibility in the process?

How does this lesson help you better understand how prayer for others (or a lack thereof) might be the thing that keeps us from sharing the gospel or allows us to step into the opportunities on a regular basis?

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