Tuesday, February 24, 2015
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Well, I guess all of us began our training for public speaking back in Kindergarten or maybe First Grade. Remember when the teacher had you do Show and Tell? You had to bring some object to school and tell about it or what it represented. I can still remember the scramble around our house a lot of mornings as one of our three children would remember, of course, with one foot out the door, "Oh boy, I've got Show and Tell today." So we'd race around the house trying to find something they could show. See, the teacher wasn't interested in us just showing up with a story that day. No, you had to have something concrete. Telling was not enough to make it. If you showed up with your show, you had to tell about it too
I'm Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about "Attracting People to Your Jesus."
Our word for today from the Word of God comes from Matthew 5:16; the words of Jesus. "Let your light shine before men that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven." We're supposed to attract people to Jesus. How do we do that? It says, "With your good deeds." You lead with deeds. In other words, evidence of the life change Jesus Christ makes; the difference He makes in someone who knows Him.
Peter said in 1 Peter 2:12, "Live good lives among the pagans that though they may accuse you of doing wrong, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day He visits us." He's talking here about a total change of heart toward God. Why? Because of the good deeds they see in you. So in a way, the lost people around us are like those teachers, the Show and Tell people. Don't just come with something to tell. Show me! Prove it to me. Let me see evidence of it. Show me how it works. It's like this is what will stimulate conversation about Jesus.
Peter again says in 1 Peter 3:15, "Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have." In this case, the "show" is a positive, hope-filled, optimistic outlook on life. It will make people say, "Well, how do you get like that?" But see, you have to tell. If you just took some unusual object to Show and Tell, everyone might think it's interesting, but they wouldn't know what it was. Words are necessary. You know, that lost person you know at work, or in your family, or at school, they can watch you for the next twenty years, but they're not going to say, "You know, Joe is such a nice guy, I'll bet Jesus died on the cross for me." No, you're going to have to tell them that. They're not going to figure it out.
But you do have to show it or no one will be interested in what you have to tell. It seems like believers tend to overdo one or the other doesn't it? Some just show Jesus by the way they're living but they never tell about Him. Or others witness real aggressively. They tell all the time, but they're not winning the right to be heard; like specializing on good deeds in the lives around us. Like what? Well, being there at the hospital, the wedding, the funeral home. Remembering special occasions in their life like birthdays and making those things really special. Or just asking the second question. Everybody says, "How are you doing?" Why don't you ask the second one, "Are you really?" It's the second question that shows you really care. Maybe it's just making each person feel really important when they're with you.
Here's an important question, "What difference could I ask Jesus to make in me that these people would notice?" What kind of difference would mean something to your family? Or your coworkers? Your teammates? And here's a second question, "How could I show love to these people in a way that would mean something to them?" Most people won't be interested in all the religious things you do, and the meetings you go to, and all the beliefs you hold. But they can't ignore one changed life and your strong love for them - the living proof that you've got a living Savior.
We learned when we were very young that they've got to go together - Show and Tell. If you never tell them, they will never know what Jesus did on the cross for them. If you never show them, they'll not listen when you tell them. Lead with deeds. They'll open the door. But then you bring Jesus in through that open door.