Yesterday we heard from Anna the importance of making God's Bible the root of our lives, even when it's not easy. Today we're welcoming Jody, who's sharing an idea I'm a big fan of: 'gossiping the gospel'. What a challenge: to be known as girls who love the gospel so much we can't help but pass it on! Welcome to Day 3 of Every Day Counts...
At a wedding recently I got chatting to an elderly man who was telling me about when he became a Christian. It was during a time of revival in the 1950s on the Isle of Lewis – lots and lots of people were becoming Christians at the same time and it was all anyone could talk about! People were meeting together in each other’s homes at every opportunity to open the bible together and share what God was teaching them – he described it as ‘gossiping the gospel’. I absolutely love that!
People were so captivated by God’s word and their love for Jesus that they just couldn’t keep it to themselves. To this day there is still a strong legacy of Christianity on the island, because people kept ‘gossiping the gospel’ throughout the generations.
The conversation reminded me of Paul’s encouragement to Timothy:
‘You then, my child, be strengthened by the grace that is in Christ Jesus, and what you have heard from me in the presence of many witnesses entrust to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.’ (2 Timothy 2:1-2)
Paul was specifically authorised by Jesus to go into the world with the gospel, and we can read about how he did that throughout the New Testament. One man he particularly trained up in ministry was Timothy, and so in this letter he is charging Timothy to do as he did – pass on the good news of Jesus to the next generation, and encourage them to do the same.
Think of it like a relay race: the runners keep running and pass the baton on when they reach their next teammate, who then keeps running to the next teammate… and on and on until the race is over. None of the runners keep the baton to themselves rather than passing it on, as by doing that they’ll surely lose! It’s the same with the gospel – we need to keep passing it on so that more and more people can hear it and be saved.
While I’m sure we all know how important it is to spread the Gospel to non-Christians, I’d love to also encourage us to pass it on to our fellow Christians. One of my favourite things about being part of a church is how different we all are – we think differently, have different gifts, and God teaches us different things at different times. How wonderful would it be if we were all sharing those things that we’re learning with each other?
Imagine how much more quickly we would grow if we ‘gossiped the gospel’ to each other, chatting about something new we learnt from the bible recently, or sharing links to a great talk or blog post rather than keeping it to ourselves? What if we regularly met with one or a few friends to read the bible together and pray? Not only would we learn from God through his word, we’d also be serving him by passing on the baton of the gospel to others.
Recommendation: Group bible study guides from the Good Book Company: http://www.thegoodbook.co.uk/bible-study/good-book-guides/
Choose 5 people – they could be friends, family, classmates, a teacher (if you’re feeling brave!) and share a verse that’s helped you recently. This could be as simple as copying a verse into a text and sending it to your five best friends to encourage them today, or you could choose a verse for each person individually according to what they’re going through at the moment.
Either send the verse on its own or write after it what excited you about it – it’ll be such a blessing!
Jody is originally from the Isle of Lewis in Scotland but now lives in St Andrews, where she is the Women’s Worker for St Andrews Free Church. She is passionate about seeing people growing in their relationship with Jesus through God’s word, and loves that she gets to do that as part of her job. When she’s not working she loves spending time with her friends, cooking and watching musicals.