When planting Gospel seeds do your part and acknowledge God's glory.
Most of us are creatures of habit. We wake up, go to work, go to lunch, go home for dinner, and then start all over again the next day.
In our habits, things can begin to grow "stale." Things we used to notice we don't anymore because we've been there and done that.
What if we asked God to give us fresh eyes today? To give us a new perspective on the world around us? To notice things we haven't noticed in the past?
You see, I believe the Bible makes it very clear that God does speak and that he wants to speak to us personally. Many times, this can be in the way of feeling a "leading" or an "urge." And in that moment, if we listen, and see circumstances from God's perspective, we can make an eternal difference.
Today, as you go about your normal routine, commit to doing so in a spirit of prayer. Pray for Easter at Great Exchange. Pray for the businesses you pass on your way to work. Pray for people that you pass. Pray for whoever and whatever might come to mind throughout the day. And, as you approach your day prayerfully, be open to listening to God's leading. Maybe to do something nice for someone, to invite a stranger to Easter, or whatever else He may lay on your heart.
Today's Action Step: Call the people on your list and invite them to Easter at Great Exchange.
We kicked off this devotional series with Paul's words in Romans 10. Let's revisit them for a moment:
It's go time. Easter is THIS SUNDAY! You've prayed, you've prepared. It's time to use your words.
Think about this: One hour on Sunday could forever change the life of your friends or family members. It's that big of a deal.
Take some time today to call or visit every friend on your list and invite them to Easter at Great Exchange. Offer to pick them up and ride with you to church. Make plans to go out for lunch with them after the service. Be a "bringer" this week because found people find people.
Today's Action Step: Blanket Campus with invitations to Easter at Great Exchange.
Today is Palm Sunday, when we remember Jesus' triumphal entry into Jerusalem. In just a few days, Jesus will be betrayed and crucified. But on this day, Jesus is making noise.
As the end of Jesus' life approached rapidly, momentum for the movement he started gained a lot of traction. Prior to his death, the spread of Jesus' fame would be so great that crowds would gather anywhere Jesus went. On this day, the crowds were so large and the scene was so noisy that people in the city were left wondering who could be worthy of such fame.
We exist in this city to make the name of Jesus famous. What if people could look at the work Jesus is doing in Boulder and it made such a noise that people were left asking, "Who is this?" "Tell me more about this Jesus that is making such a stir in our city?"
Today's Action Step: Pray over your list of friends from last week.
One of the reasons I think we are not faithful to share our faith very often is simply a lack of compassion. I know that sounds harsh and we would never say that because that sounds terrible. But actions speak louder than words.
When is the last time you shared your faith with someone? When is the last time you prayed desperately for God to get the attention of someone you care about. When is the last time you intentionally invested in someone who doesn't believe like you?
All of those are symptoms of a lack of compassion for people far from God. Maybe you've forgotten what it's like to be without the hope that you have found in Jesus. Maybe you've convinced yourself the "polite" thing to do is to keep quiet about your faith. Since when is ignoring people's needs and withholding hope the polite thing to do?
Take some time today to think about the people you wrote down on your list last week to invite to Easter at Great Exchange Church. Who, on your list, is close to you but far from God? Spend some time praying today for the names on that list. Pray that they will say "yes" to Jesus and "yes" to your invitation to attend Easter at Great Exchange with you.
Today's Action Step: Pray for Boulder and our city's leadership.
I can't think of many harder jobs than serving as a city leader. As a pastor of a church in charge of a comparatively small number of people, I couldn't imagine the responsibility of leading a city of roughly 100,00. That's a lot of pressure.
One of the things that makes leadership easier is knowing that there are so many people who pray for me on a regular basis. Take some time today to pray for the betterment of our city and specifically the leadership of our city because, as we've already discussed, as the city prospers, so does the opportunity for the gospel to advance.
Today's Action Step: Say Thank You or Give a Gift to Someone who serves our city.
When the prophet Jeremiah told the nation of Israel to pray for their city and its welfare he was speaking to people that would soon be in exile in a culture that was completely opposing to their faith.
When it comes to our approach to a city, Christians usually fall into one of three approaches:
1. Cursing the Darkness
Some Christians are known for being against their cities. Their churches are full of people that gather every week to pat each other on the back and be thankful that they aren't like those "heathens" outside. Their sermons are usually directed at people outside of the church.
2. Turning Inward
This is where Christians gather together and seek constant retreat from their culture. They gather together and wait for Jesus to return without having any significant impact.
3. Transforming their City.
These are Christians that believe that they have sent into their culture to transform lives. They take their role in society seriously and they pray fervently for their city and work hard to make it a better place because of their presence in the city.
I believe the gospel-centered, Biblical approach to our culture is this one. To seek the welfare of the place God has called us and to pray for it to succeed. Take a moment today to say thank you, perhaps even with a small gift, to someone that makes our city better.
Today's Action Step: Write a short Thank-you card or note to someone.
A little thankfulness goes a long way. Every day you have people in your life that serve you in some capacity. Maybe it is a loved one who is thoughtful. Maybe it is the police officer that keeps you safe. Maybe it's the secretary who keeps your schedule running smoothly or the friend that walks with you to class every day.
When is the last time you've taken a moment to just say, "Thank You?" Those two words are incredibly powerful. They show an attitude of humility that doesn't act like you "deserve" what people do for you as if you're better than others. And they show an attitude of appreciation that doesn't take people for granted.
In this story, Jesus healed ten people who were suffering from a terrible skin disease. All ten were healed, and yet only one returned to say, "Thank You." Only one understood the importance of gratitude. Let us understand the importance of being grateful and saying "Thank You" to others today.
Today's Action Step: Take a moment to encourage somebody today.
The tongue is such a small muscle compared to the other muscles in the body. On average, it is only about 3 inches long. Yet there is so much power in the tongue.
Did you know your tongue-print is as unique as your fingerprint? This is true figuratively as well. Your words leave a unique impression on others.
King Solomon, the wisest man to ever live, reminds us in our passage today that the tiny muscle in our mouths holds the power of life and death. You can use your words to build people up or tear people down. Choose your words wisely today and use them as an opportunity to speak life into those around you.
Today's Action Step: Share the story of your spiritual journey with someone else.
Every one of us are on a journey. If you follow Jesus, at some point your journey led you to Him. It led you out of your self-reliance and into faith in Jesus' death, burial, and resurrection. He led you from a life of hopelessness to a life full of hope.
Every day you are surrounded by people who need hope. You have found the hope of the world and you have the opportunity to share it. Some people over complicate things. They ask, "What should I say?" It's simple. Share the story of what Jesus has done in your life. People are drawn to stories. Perhaps someone will start a journey towards Jesus because of a simple invitation to hear your story and an invitation to 'come and see' the One who has changed your life.