The joy of sharing christ with others
The Upward Look, by Jon Forrest
The Joy of Sharing Christ with Others
One of the most joyful times in the ministry of Jesus was the day he received reports from the seventy-two disciples he had sent to prepare people for his coming. He had warned them that it wouldn’t be easy, that they would be like sheep in the midst of wolves.
There must have been times when no one would take them in, forcing them to sleep on the ground. There were probably days when they didn’t get a meal. There would be moments when they would face rejection and even painful, physical persecution. But the report they gave to Jesus was filled with joy. There had been successes and Satan had been plowed down by the name of Jesus. Luke 10:21 tells us that Jesus was full of Joy and that he connected with Holy Spirit in words of praise.
When God uses us to reach out to people who don’t know Jesus, but who need Him, great rejoicing occurs, not only by those who are restored to a relationship with God, but to the ones who shared the message of Christ with them and all of heaven. If you want to start a party, lead someone to Christ.
“Joy” is not the same as “happy.”
Happiness comes when our circumstances are what we want them to be. Joy comes when God’s will is done in our lives and we attain to the life God wants us to have. Rejoicing is what we experience when joy is embraced.
I want to share a powerful story about joy and gratitude that I recently heard…
While on a short-term mission trip, Jack Hinton from New Bern, North Carolina, was leading worship at a leper colony on the island of Tobago. There was time for one more song, so he asked if anyone had a request. A woman who had been facing away from the pulpit turned around.
Jack said, “It was the most hideous face I had ever seen. The woman’s nose and ears were entirely gone. The disease had destroyed her lips as well.” She lifted a fingerless hand in the air and asked, “Can we sing Count Your Many Blessings?”
Overcome with emotion, Hinton left the service. He was followed by another team member who said, “Jack, I guess you’ll never be able to sing that song again.”
“Yes, I will,” he replied, “but I’ll never sing the same way.”
The woman’s joy and gratitude in the midst of great physical pain came from the transformation Christ had made in her life when he saved her. The most important part of our joy comes from the work the Holy Spirit does in us when we come to know him.
In my personal ministry, the greatest moments have been those when people have responded to the gospel message and surrendered their lives to him.
This Sunday we will share the follow-up message from last week’s message on “The Lord of the Harvest” with one titled “Celebrating the Harvest” based on Luke 10:17-20. I hope you will come and share in this tremendous celebration of what Christ does to give re-birth and joy to all who respond to our witness and the joy that comes from delivering that message.
Your joyful servant,