We had a guest speaker today. That is sometimes an anxiety producing event for me. I love my Pastor and, in my mind, no one can preach as good as he does. He touches my soul.
But this guy was close. He was articulate and passionate and had a great message.
He started with John 3:16 "For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life."
He said that was the passage he felt was the essence of Missions. That God loved us so much and Jesus paid the redemptive sacrifice that we were directed to go out and tell others the good news.
He talked about redemption using S&H Green Stamps as an example. For those who remember, cashing in your stamps at the Redemption Center was an exciting thing to do. But it cost something to get those stamps. The redemption was not free. Christ paid the ultimate price for our redemption. And he is still waiting for us at the Redemption Center.
He wants us to bring that redemption to all the world. It sounds overwhelming but it only takes one person. We saw a clip from "Schindler's List" and heard about how one man made such a huge difference and even then he did not feel he had done enough.
His last point was that hope is coming. He talked about Simeon (Luke 2: 25-35) and what he said when they brought Jesus to him to be consecrated. He knew that Jesus was the person he had been waiting for and knew that the world would be changed by him. He was filled with hope. Again, his message was that we were to take this hope out to our neighbors, our friends, and our co-workers.
It was a powerful message and I was so engrossed that I forgot to take notes! I'll do better next time.