John 4: 36, Luke 11: 33, Matthew 10: 33, 2 Timothy 2: 12
Well it's time to hit the corridors of learning again. Back from holidays & back to working reality.
I'd like to tell you about my, erm, 'holidays'. I had the pleasure of going to two Christian camps this summer with our youth group. One a trip to the gates of heaven (Soul Survivor) and the other a trip to the gates of hmmm. 'Manchesta'.
Festival Manchester was, to be honest, a mixture of wonderful awe and absolute misery. FM has it's superb moments. The time you see a person you spoke to on the streets at the evening concert, the moment you see the people stand to receive Jesus as Saviour and 'YES!', when you are finally first in the shower queue. But then there are the harder parts, like sleeping.
They challenge you at FM to be a missionary and to tell people about Jesus and about your faith. It is at this point when someone asks you what you are doing removing poo from their path that you have a golden opportunity to say something profound, 'that you are a Christian, that you are here to show people that the church cares and to say that Jesus has transformed your life'. But what comes out - "I'm cleaning poo, do you wanna go the festival this weekend?"
Why is it that when I had such amazing opportunities that I didn't use them properly. Why is it that we go weak at the knees when it comes to sharing our faith. I wonder if we are just not used to letting it pass our lips that we are Christians. Could it be that we are worried what people will think of us? It seemed that the best I could come up with on the streets was to mumble "We're all Christians" and invite them to the festival at the weekend.
I think that maybe we should consider whether in our normal lives we assume that people will reject us if we say what we believe to our friends and workmates. We are unpractised at sharing our faith.
Festival Manchester was a superb opportunity for some of our youth group as they became practiced at sharing their faith. When you actually start daring to share your faith then you find that it becomes much easier. By the end of the week I saw both leaders and youth start to become quite brave. I even had a go at praying with a bloke.
If you haven't dared to tell your friends, family or work mates that you are a Christian yet then you won't be able to have any kind of impact on their lives for God. That's your starting point. They need to know, then hear what God means to you and to hear what God could mean to them.
I know that our youth group are becoming more enthusiastic about evangelism now because it doesn't scare them as much any more.
Finally the best bit about Festival Manchester was to see hundreds of people turning their lives to Christ and escaping judgment. Consider how much greater buzz you will have if it's your mate getting right with God.
I hope you will dare, dare to share, tell them about Jesus. I promise you won't regret it.
Here is some Bible stuff to have a look at.
John 4: 36 The joy of those who save souls.
Luke 11: 33 No one hides a lamp.
Mat 10: 33 + 2 Tim 2: 12 If you deny me-
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