We spread good news of God’s love. As people of faith, that’s what we do.
Yes, we go to work. We provide life for ourselves and family. We serve our community. We enjoy recreation, beauty, art, rest. And through all these experiences, more than personal achievements, God calls us to spread good news of Holy Love. Whatever we do, that’s what living faith is all about. From what I’ve seen, that’s when we feel truly fulfilled and at peace.
The ways we communicate abound, of course—email, text, social media, phone, TV, YouTube, music, good ‘ol fashion newspapers and magazines, even hand-written cards and letters. Then, of course, there’s face to face conversation. We humans are made to relate and will always find new ways to do so. The question is: what do we say? What is worthy of us sharing, expressing, reposting, passing along?
It’s seems there’s plenty of bad news. Disturbing reports or tweets unsettle us. A medical diagnosis scares us. Commercial messages about what to buy and what will make us happy bombard us. Cultural assumptions and systems constrain us. Sometimes, it may be hard to notice and center in what’s good about life. Yet, I believe there’s always good news for those with hearts to see and hear, because Holy Love always remains with us, among us, inside us. It can be deeply moving when we recognize and receive this grace. It can be powerfully inspiring when we share it with others.
“Have you not known? Have you not heard?” That’s what Isaiah asks people for whom he cares dearly, and encourages in them as they live in captive exile. And St. Paul affirms that he sets aside personal privilege to “become as” other individuals, that he may share the gospel and its blessings with all. We’ll read those two texts in worship this week. In classical terms, it’s called evangelism—which literally means “spreading good news.”
It’s not really about standing on street corners with a bull horn or pushing pamphlets or knocking on unknown doors or whatever else may come to mind when we hear that word. It’s about listening to colleagues at work, or a neighbor who annoys, or a family member far away, or a stranger in a store … to understand their experiences, struggles and joys; to meet them where they are. It’s about letting them know they are loved and not alone. It’s about providing practical help when needed. It’s about offering an encouraging word when unsolicited. Sometimes it’s about inviting people to join the journey of living faith with us at church.
I like to think it’s all about something else we’ll share this Sunday—baptism. As we’ll affirm: God nurtures us in love and empowers us for a ministry of hospitality, peace, and justice. It’s a promise beyond all boundaries. It’s a bond beyond all limits as we live in a spirit of wisdom and strength and reverence and joy in God’s presence, forever. That’s good news! That’s what we do!
Grace and Peace,