I am always amazed when I read about the new efforts at “Evangelization”. Even the efforts of Pope Emeritus Benedict at encouraging an age whereby the fostering of love in the world is accomplished by what he refers as “The New Evangelization”, is anything but new! After all, was not the greatest of all evangelists the Son of God himself? Did Jesus not focus on the most important components of “Evangelization” by teaching the fundamental tenets of the Christian faith, and then courageously foster every time He spoke, a deeper understanding of its components and applications? And was not all of the ideas of faith that ended with Christ’s death not carried forth even further by the Apostles who continued living, loving and leading with both joy and the strength of conviction as the years progressed? “And the disciples were filled with joy and with the Holy Spirit.” Acts 13:52 NIV. And while we may not have actually named the process itself for perhaps 1300 more years, that does not change the fact that what was, is, and always will be by the intent of the Christian heart in sharing our beliefs, an ongoing effort at “Evangelization”?
Today the process by which we effort our “Evangelization” is vastly different that it was in its early days. While we may at times curse the technologies that the modern age has afforded man, the fact of the matter is that we can now reach the four corners of the globe in a nanosecond! My blog is one example of the miracle technology has gifted to us. For example, since the beginning of March, 2013, the chart below (part of the statistics WordPress maintains for me) shows you the scope of the countries my words have touched, and the number of people who have shared my thoughts. Pretty amazing for a housewife from South Carolina, don’t you think?
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So now think about the lives that were touched by the mini-series that aired on “The HISTORY CHANNEL” last night, “THE BIBLE”! The celebrity “Twitter” accounts of many unlikely notables were abuzz with messages urging their followers to tune in, including Rapper P. Diddy; Glee TV star Jane Lynch; Singer Christine Aguilera; The Duchess of York, Sarah Ferguson; Maroon 5 singer Adam Levine; Reality notable Kate Gosselin and Shannon Tweed, wife of KISS star Gene Simmons! And while it is too early to check out the ratings numbers, polls taken were universally positive. I watched it with my father, and while there were a few liberties of poetic license, it was a remarkable undertaking which, when it is over, will have numbered 10 hours of historically accurate tales from the Bible and I suspect, will have a viewership of several hundred million people! Yes, “Evangelization” at it’s finest, and all because a devout Roman Catholic actress, Roma Downey, and her famed reality show producer husband, Mark Burnett, dared to dream of a way to bring history to life and share faith’s tale. And so the effort at using the tools of modern technology at fostering “Evangelization” continues!
I am going to share with you some Bible verses that will focus on the words of Jesus and tell you some of the reasons He believed “Evangelization” was absolutely necessary. Read them and then remember that sharing God’s message to others is what is asked of all of us. So, if I can do what I do every day in writing my thoughts, what can each of you do?
Matthew 9:37-38 Then He said to His disciples, “The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. “Therefore beseech the Lord of the harvest to send out workers into His harvest.”
Luke 19:10 “For the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost.”
Acts 1:8 – but you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witnesses both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and even to the remotest part of the earth.”
Matthew 28:19-20 – “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”
2 Corinthians 6:2 – for He says, “At the acceptable time I listened to you, And on the day of salvation I helped you”; behold, now is “the acceptable time,” behold, now is “the day of salvation “
“Continue steadfastly in prayer, being watchful in it with thanksgiving. At the same time, pray also for us, that God may open to us a door for the word, to declare the mystery of Christ, on account of which I am in prison— that I may make it clear, which is how I ought to speak. Walk in wisdom toward outsiders, making the best use of the time. Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer each person.”
Colossians 4: 2-6 ESV
It is now March of 2013, more than 3 months since Superstorm Sandy struck on October 29, 2012, and yet there are still people living in Staten Island that remain without the basic necessities for living that you and I take for granted. Lives will continue be impacted for years to come. But you can help! Please consider sending a Gift Card to the organization listed below. Thousands of cards have been distributed since November but millions more are needed. Give as much as you can, as often as you can! Your gift might just mean a family who has lost everything might just have something to smile about!
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