CS Lewis once said something like “a man wishing to remain an atheist cannot be too careful of what he reads.” I think it’s much the same with a man wishing to remain unconvicted of something. I read two things the other day, which when taken together busted me up like a piñata at a first grade birthday party.
This first was this. I was able to read through Radical, by David Platt, in a single day (what can I say? Setup days always have a lot of downtime)
I read passages like this one:
“If we were left to ourselves with the task of taking the gospel to the world, we would immediately begin planning innovative strategies and plotting elaborate schemes. We would organize conventions, develop programs, and create foundations… But Jesus is so different from us. With the task of taking the gospel to the world, he wandered through the streets and byways…All He wanted was a few men who would think as He did, love as He did, see as He did, teach as He did and serve as He did. All He needed was to revolutionize the hearts of a few, and they would impact the world.”
Which made me want to look at this:
Which in turn made me realize my head had been buried in the sand for a very long time. Any time missions or evangelizing the lost around the world came up, my first instinct was to say something like “that’s great for you, but I don’t really feel called to the mission field.”
Is that right?
What occurred to me this week (thanks to Platt) was that when I beg off spreading the Gospel because I don’t feel ‘called’ to it, I’m taking a very clear directive from Jesus to all believers and making it about whether or not I feel I’m supposed to do something.
But I’m not a pastor, I’d say. Because only pastors have experienced the fullness of Christ and can attest to what redemption feels like!
And the truth about that is so what? The disciples didn’t start out that way either. Jesus took regular people and used them to build a church that has endured for millennia. Fishermen. Tax collectors. Ex-whores.
Just tell your story, man. What did Jesus do for you? How did it feel then? How does it feel now?
Ok, you’re saved. What happens next? I realized I didn’t have to be ordained to tell people those things.
Being the hands and feet of Jesus is a piece of cake–said no one, ever.
Platt also makes this point: Every saved person this side of heaven owes the Gospel to every lost person this side of hell.
If that is true, and I am any sort of believer, and any sort of man, who am I to pass on what is commissioned by God?
“God beckons storm clouds and they come. He tells the wind to blow and the rain to fall, and they obey immediately. He speaks to the mountains, ‘You go there,’ and He says to the seas, ‘You stop here, and they do it. Everything in all creation responds in obedience to the Creator…until we get to you and me. We have the audacity to look God in the face and say, ‘No.”
It’s pretty clear what we are to do. What I am to do.
One thought on “Conviction II: With a Vengeance”
Amen Tom. This was a marvelous read. I understand the conviction.