As I was walking through some neighborhood I didn’t mean to be in, I began to think about all of the people I encounter in a day. If you really sit down and ponder that, you’ll probably notice that you encounter a lot of people throughout the day. You walk by people on the sidewalk. You pass people sitting at the cafe you usually get coffee at. You stand in line for the bus behind several people. You do plenty of things throughout the day where you encounter people. I kind of just mulled over that for a few blocks and then I developed this curiosity as to why I just encounter people.
I thought about how some people in this world are never shown the love of Jesus. A lot of people know who Jesus is and have speculations as to wether He existed or not but they aren’t ever told the truth of His birth, His death, His resurrection, or His time in between. They’re content with their speculations of what could have been but they don’t know what is. That’s not really their fault either.
Proverbs 28:1 says, “The wicked flee though no one pursues, but the righteous are as bold as a lion.” Boldness is tough and a lot of the time we shy away from that word in circumstances that make us uncomfortable. We make excuses for why we aren’t choosing to be bold. Things like, “Oh, they wouldn’t be receptive,” or, “I’m not ready right now but the next opportunity I will for sure.” There is no boldness in that.
The truth is that we all are guilty of doing this at one time or another. We don’t realize that what we’re doing is choosing ourselves over others. We’re choosing to be selfish and unintentionally selective in sharing God’s love. That’s been killing me. The fact that it’s selfish to not share God’s love has been stuck in my mind for a couple weeks now and I love what it’s doing. It’s provoking this deep desire to love more fervently, to give more generously, and to speak of Christ fearlessly. It has made me significantly more aware of the words I say and the facial expressions I make in every encounter. I’ve begun to recognize the impact that simply saying hello has. All of the little things that we completely brush past throughout the day have been so apparent and the impact they leave on people even more so.
If you reflect back on what Jesus instructed us to do as His followers, you’ll notice that it comes in a beautiful simplicity. Mark 16:15 (NIV) illustrates it perfectly.
He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation.
He didn’t say, “Go into the world and preach the gospel to whoever you feel deserves it most.” He didn’t say, “Go into the world and preach the gospel to whoever, but at your own convenience. Just do it when you’re comfortable.” He said, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation.” Jesus doesn’t exclude anyone from the Kingdom of God in that statement. He doesn’t allow room for our own insecurities and selfish behaviors. He tells us plain and simple. All creation.
With that in mind, I decided I was tired of just encountering people and that it was time I began interacting with people. I want to be so confident in Christ that I am absolutely fearless in sharing His name. I want to have a boldness that makes satan cringe and that sends demons crashing to the floor. I want to relentlessly pursue God through my interactions with others. There is now this crazy craving inside of me to just go. To go and share, to go and teach, to go and show up, and most importantly, to go and love. There is no better way to share the love of Jesus than to show the love of Jesus.
My friends, we were made for more than ourselves. We were made to be the hands and feet of Jesus. To tread through tough waters for the glory of God’s wonderful name. Be bold, love big, speak fearlessly, and pursue Christ with more than you think you are capable of. Choose to interact with people, not just encounter them. Use every opportunity you have to share the love of Jesus. There is no greater joy than inviting people into the house of the Lord and seeing their lives transform!
Consider this & share your thoughts in the comments below!
“And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.” Matthew 24:14 NIV
“Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” Matthew 28:19-20 NIV
“Declare his glory among the nations, his marvelous deeds among all peoples.” Psalm 96:3 NIV