Monday, December 12, 2011

Telling others

So many are trying to get things all together in time for Christmas so that it's just perfect. You know those ad's (apart from this one) that are glowy, smiley and completely untrue. Sadly, what they mostly precipitate these days is an increased credit card debt trying to live this unattainable dream. Perfect house, perfect tree, perfect presents for the kids, perfect sumptuous food and all the 'right' perfect people around us. I honestly think that the greatest lie of this time of year is that perfect is actually achievable.

If you want something to jar you out of that delusion this sermon will and amazingly it went to Number 1 on iTunes downloads. A sermon about the crucifixion Number 1 on iTunes- who would have believed it (a deeply deeply full-on one to boot just so you're warned). However, at least a few more people might be awakening to the fact we are so very not perfect but for Jesus. There is only one who is perfect at this time of year and that is Jesus and he is alive and the saviour and hope of the world.

Every year when I worked doing a proper job I would invite friends in my office to our Carol service. Sometimes they even came. Then, when I resigned to start this chapter of the book, lots of people kept on asked me 'Why are you leaving?'. The summary for them was simply that God had called me to tell people about Jesus (Romans 10:14-15). I had to tell so many this that in the end I decided to write an email so that when someone asked I could simply say 'I'll send you my email.' 

Here's the thing. I didn't want to leave having worked with friends for thirteen years and not have told them the gospel and the best way I came up with doing that was to write it out and email it to them. It potentially made for an interesting farewell when you have an internal email with over 3000 users (I decided in the end not to send it to 'All users' but nevertheless hundreds had got the email by the time I left). Imagine working next to people year after year after year and NEVER getting around to telling them about Jesus. Tons of people are in that place. 

Now you don't have to be a weirdo and remember they have to work with you every day but they DO need at some point to hear the gospel and you are one of his followers and the way that happens is YOU TELL THEM or invite them to listen to someone like me who will do that for you. You are salt and light and in the absence of anyone else I'm afraid you're the messenger. You're the grand plan. You're it until Jesus finds a more suitable sinner to take the job. I have a renewed passion for this 'telling others' business having preached on the second coming last weekend. Please tell someone as the Spirit gives you a prompt to (and He will if you ask him to)

That email is called 'What's it all about?"and it's my best attempt to explain the gospel to people. I am sure a few Pharisee's will pick holes in my attempt but it is a fifteen minute read that I wrote as best I knew how back then for the people I worked with. I wrote it because I wanted them to believe in Jesus. Recently, a friend emailed my gospel essay to a friend in Hong Kong as a way of telling them the good news and it had a wee smidgen of power and another friend posted it on facebook as a way of telling his friends. Anyway, my passion remains that we must be a people who tell others and if my short-ish effort can help you tell your friends about Jesus then please do send it, post it to facebook and wait to see who might click, tweet it, email it or print it off and give it away. Perhaps combine it with an invitation to your Carol service and see what might happen. Alternately, for the visual types you could post this. 

I love this time of year basically cos I get to tell lots of people who would never otherwise hear of Jesus about him. It's why I left my nice comfortable job and pension. Last week, I got to tell 250 parents of kids at a posh nursery the gospel. The nursery owner gives me three minutes, yes three minutes, to do that and I think it is the most important three minutes of my year. How many people responded? One. But was it was worth it? Oh how it's worth it. Amazing. It's truly truly amazing when anyone comes to know Jesus. May I never ever tire of it.  


Andrew and Hannah said...

What a great post to read on my birthday - thanks David! We had our carol service last night, they played this - may it bless you and your readers as your post has blessed and encouraged me to be "the suitable sinner" to share the Gospel of truth!

David Cooke said...

Glad you liked it. Happy B 'day!

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