Sermon in a nutshell: Matthew 10:16-33
I have been known as a “weird” person. I would do anything that takes to spread the Gospel! I was not like that when I was 25 years old. I was shy and “normal” person. However, when I was 25 years old, I had an opportunity to visit my mother, who started a church in Jeju-island in Korea. My original idea was to have a sight-seeing tour. However, I was caught up by my mother’s ministry schedule and action and could not have my own leisurely fun! I helped her and her ministry. She took me with her and I had to visit every house in the town.
As a shy and “normal” young man, I was not used to be called names and treated harshly. People spit on the ground in front of me to insult me! People threw salt on my back when I got out of their houses as a symbolic way to cast out unclean spirits! First I was mad and upset! I was ready to fight back with them but could not do that because of my mother! Frustrated and angry I came back to the small shaggy church. When I prayed, however, a thought came to my mind: “When have you suffered because of Jesus?” I read the Bible passage that we read together in our church worship this morning. Even though I had some insults and dirty looks and names, I was not handed over to councils and flogged! I was not dragged before governors and kings because of Jesus! So, I have still long way to go! I realized that I had never been insulted because of Jesus! I enjoyed my church life with good people. I thought that was the “normal” way that a Christian should enjoy! Such upsetting incidents were my first experiences of the raw reality of the outside world! I felt real shame because I was a nominal Christian and not a real one!
So I did many things to be arrested and flogged for the name of Jesus! I used “Four Spiritual Laws” and was as bold and rude as I could be! I invaded other people’s private lives and ruined their days. I have done my guilty part in my ministry! Once, I threw up dining tables when people had drinking party and beaten by them! I thought that Jesus was beaten to death and I still had a long way to go! Anyway, was I a sheep sent into the midst of wolves? I was not afraid of those who could kill only my body and not my soul!
Looking back, now I wonder whether my goal was to be a martyr or to be an evangelist. I was as innocent as doves but not as wise as serpents. So, my partners in ministry! Please do not repeat the same mistakes that I made! If you and I are arrested and flogged, Jesus will be with us surely! But let us be wise in our evangelism strategies! There are many wise ways to spread the Good News!
My suggestion is to adopt the “Five Love Language” concept. The Good News that we want to spread is simple:”God loves you!” How to deliver the message effectively to diverse people? As we know, people have different love languages: praise, gift, service, quality time, and touch. Let us use them and be wise in sharing this Good News! One way to do it is to be a volunteer teach at the Concord High School. They need math tutors and computer lab volunteers. It will be a really effective outreach to our community! Young people will experience God’s love in a practical way! Would you do it?
- What has been the most effective way to share the Gospel with others in your life?
- What is the love language of your friend whom you want to share the Gospel with?