Ask God to orient or reorient you to Himself. Confess any known sin. Thank Him for His forgiveness. Be still and reflect on Jesus and His sacrifice for you. Ask the Holy Spirit to open your heart and mind to God’s Word. Pray for others in your life that they, too, would know and love God today.
Several weeks ago Terry introduced a model for living in a missional way. The model had five parts to it. For our devotional this week we will ask God to help us grow in devotion to apply that model to our lives. The model included 5 P’s – Pray, Pursue, Prepare, Proclaim, and Plan.
Today P #4 – Proclaim – tell the gospel
Philemon 1:6, “I (Paul) pray that you may be active in sharing your faith so that you may have a full understanding of every good thing you have in Christ.”
1 Corinthians 2:1-5, “When I (Paul) came to you, brothers, I did not come with eloquence or superior wisdom as I proclaimed to you the testimony about God. For I resolved to know nothing while I was with you except Jesus Christ and him crucified. I came to you in weakness and fear, and with much trembling. My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstrations of the Spirit’s power, so that your faith might not rest on men’s wisdom but on God’s power.”
Colossians 4:6, “Let your conversation be always full of grace seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.”
Proclaim is another word for preach or tell. Proclamation has a bad rap. Often the word conjures up the idea of a street preacher standing on the corner speaking words of condemnation and judgement. In that picture the “street preacher” is telling people they do not know something that they do not want to hear. In our context, proclaiming is telling people that you know and care for who Jesus is what He has done. Proclaiming is testifying to who Jesus is and asking someone to make a decision about Him.
Again, the results of proclamation do not rest on our shoulders. Our call is to be faithful to proclaim as God gives us opportunity. God wants to be known. He will give us opportunity to make Him known as we pray and prepare to make Him known.
In 1 Corinthians 2 Paul presented the reality of the Gospel with simple authenticity empowered by the Holy Spirit. He did not dress things up and try to make them appealing but presented the reality of the good news authentically. Paul realized that the message coupled with the Spirit’s power was what made the proclamation effective.
One important thing to remember is that Paul is proclaiming the good news in the context of a gathering. Either formally in the synagogue, or informally in someone’s home or in the city square where people debate ideas. The proclamation that we are thinking of is in the context of relationship. Your proclamation of the gospel may happen over a series of conversations. At River we have called this, dropping “spiritual potato chips.” The reality of God’s work in your life is woven into your conversation. Your conversation does not have to be “weird” or “super spiritual” but just real and seasoned with the reality of what God has done.
Having grace-filled “salty” conversations means that we leave people wanting more. They want to talk to us more because they feel accepted and valued. Our conversations, like salt on the tongue, leave them thirsty for more. Salty conversations will become more the norm if we can – by the help of the Holy Spirit – train ourselves to have these type of conversations regardless of who we are talking to, whether we are talking to a believer or someone far from God.
How can you grow in having grace-filled, salty conversations?
(Personalize this prayer today; make it specific to the circumstances that face you.)
Ask God to lead you through His Spirit as you go through your day. Ask Him to bring to mind the truth of the gospel and its implications for what you will encounter today. Tell Him “Yes” to His will and ask Him for His power and protection to live this “yes.” Ask God to create and reveal opportunities to proclaim the good news today. KEEP PRAYING THROUGHOUT YOUR DAY.