Barriers to Sharing
This week we kicked off our new series called Unbinding Your Heart in all of our worship services and Sunday School classes. This series is all about unbinding the good news of Jesus Christ in our hearts and lives. In this series, we will look at deepening our prayer lives and becoming more aware of God’s activity in our lives, so that we can share this life-transforming faith with our world. This series has the potential to literally change our lives if we let it! We have given out participant workbooks in all of our Sunday School classes, but if you are not involved in a Sunday School class and would still like a workbook, please contact the church office to receive your free copy.
We often feel restless and resistant to the word “evangelism.” One reason is because there are a lot of negative stereotypes associated with evangelism- like street corner preaching, door to door witnessing, and pushy people. Another reason is because we don’t know what to say in conversations with others, and we worry about who am I to say anything to another person. All of these are relevant, valid reasons, however, what happens when someone comes into our lives who needs God? Evangelism is about opening our ears to hear people’s cries for help and then unbinding our tongues to reach out to care and love them.
In Acts 8:26-40, the Spirit directs a disciple named Philip to an Ethiopian eunuch riding in a carriage. The eunuch was a prominent man in the Ethiopian society, but he is also an outsider and a foreigner in this story. Eunuchs were excluded from worshipping in the Jerusalem Temple, according to the book of Deuteronomy. He also had a different ethnicity and culture than the Israelites. However, somehow the man heard about God and wanted to know more. He was reading from the prophet Isaiah when Philip met him, and Philip guided him to realize the unconditional love of Christ.
Sometimes the only obstacle people have from becoming a Christian is simply the fact that no one has ever told them about God. Sometimes, perhaps, we are the barrier, preventing people from hearing about God. Yet, what if instead of constructing barriers between the gospel and others, we instead built bridges? As Martin Luther King Jr. states, “Build bridges, not walls.” As the Holy Spirit guided Philip, the Holy Spirit guides us. Through partnering with God, we can be bridge-builders to people in our workplace, neighborhood, school, and community!
1. How do you feel when you hear the word evangelism?
2. What difference does being a Christian make in your life?
3. Why does it matter that other people become Christians?
Monday- Romans 8:35-39, Unbinding Your Heart pg. 127
Tuesday- Mark 5:24b-34, Unbinding your Heart pg. 128
Wednesday- Genesis 1:26-2:3, Unbinding your Heart pg. 129
Thursday- Matthew 1:1-14, Unbinding your Heart pg. 130
Friday- 1 John 3:14-24, Unbinding your Heart pg. 131