03 January 2010

The lived-out Gospel

"Let my heart be broken by the things that break the heart of God."-Bob Pierce, founder of World Vision

Have you ever begun reading a book, wishing you could set it down because you know the effect that it could (or should) have upon your life? Or facing the greater fear, to read the book and not allow it to change you?

This morning, I started reading The Hole in Our Gospel by Richard Stearns, the president of World Vision. Thus far, I have only read the preface and the introduction, though the complacent, sinful side of me already wants to set the book back on the shelf. To put it back where it has been sitting, for several weeks, unconsidered. "Ignorance is bliss," goes the old familiar saying.

Stearns asks the question, "Is our faith about going to church, studying the Bible and avoiding the most serious sins--or does God expect more?" I'll be honest, there are days where the former sounds very appealing. My own comfortable existence. Just God, me, and some dear friends.

However, because I read my Bible, I know that He does expect more of me. Brad and I have been talking recently that although we are saved by grace, through faith and not by works (Ephesians 2:8-9), we are not excused from works. Our work, for Christ, is the evidence of an active faith (James 2:18) and serving others may open the doorway to the Gospel. The Gospel lived out. The Great Commission.

I pray for a soft heart to the message of this book. I pray that God provides me with a practical understanding of how to put into action my desires to fill the hole in the gospel.

Anyone who does not love, does not know God, because God is love. -I John 4:8

No comments: