Week 1 Hope
1 Thessalonians 2:8
“We loved you so much that we were delighted to share with you not only the gospel of God but our lives as well, because you had become so dear to us.”
Does our love for people go beyond just a sense that we need to share the gospel with them? Too often we have sought for people know about Christ by the sharing of the gospel. It is powerful and can change hearts and lives. We go from learning about Christ to knowing Christ and the power of his resurrection alive and at work in the world today because it is alive in us.
For years, we reported numbers and information to our denominational bodies as a tool for gauging our effectiveness in sharing the gospel. This may not seem bad, but is too narrow view of the life changing transformation that comes from each of these encounters with Christ. We run the risk of seeing people as a number, a commodity, rather than seeing them.
The sharing of the gospel should always include the sharing of our lives. It is not my life any longer but Christ living in me. The love of a gospel devoid of relationship is a flawed understanding of the gospel. We are saved “from” our sins and “for” a purpose. The purpose that we share the life changing gospel of Christ with others as we share our lives with them.
This is the hope we have, that in the doing and sharing of life and the gospel together we become the presence of Christ in the world today.