|Theme:||Telling others about Jesus. Proper 6 (11) Year A|
|Scripture:||As you go, preach this message: 'The kingdom of heaven is near.' Matthew 10:7 (NIV)|
Do you ever read the newspaper? I read it every day. That's how I keep up with what's happening in the world. Every morning, before I eat breakfast, I walk out my front door and pick up the newspaper which has been delivered to my doorstep by a person whose job it is to deliver the news.
When I open my newspaper, the first thing I look at is the front page. That's where they put the most important stuff. Next, I look at the sports page. I like sports and like to see if my favorite teams won. Some days they do, and some days they don't. Finally, I turn to my favorite part -- the comics! Why do I save the comics for last? Well, sometimes, some of the news might not be good news, so I like to finish reading the newspaper with a smile on my face! The person who delivers the newspaper to my doorstep each day helps me to get my day started with a smile. You know, I don't even know that person. He, or she, gets up very early in the morning while I am still asleep, rolls the newspapers, and drives all around the town delivering the news.
The Bible tells us that Jesus traveled all around the countryside. He went to many different towns and villages, and everywhere he went he saw crowds of people who were lost and helpless. It broke his heart. One day, he turned to his followers and said to them, "There are so many who need help, but there are not enough who are willing to help them. Get on your knees and pray that the Lord will send workers to help them."
When they had finished praying, Jesus called twelve of his followers to come to him. "Go," he said, "heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse the lepers, cast out demons." Do you know what else Jesus told his disciples? He said, "As you go, preach this message: 'The kingdom of heaven is near.'"
Wow! That's good news, isn't it? Think about it. "The kingdom of heaven is near." It isn't some far off place where we will go at some far off time. In fact, you might even say, "It's right here -- right now." Of course Jesus came to give us eternal life in heaven, but he also came so that we could have life, and have it to the fullest -- right now. (John 10:10) Now, that's good news that everyone should hear!
My newspaper carrier has been given the job of delivering the news. When I go out to get my newspaper, I expect it to be there. If the carrier doesn't do his job, I don't get the news. Just as Jesus called the twelve to deliver the good news, he has also called you and me to deliver the good news. If we don't do our job, someone won't get the good news today.
Father, there is no better news than the good news that you love us and sent your Son so that we might have life and that we might have it abundantly. Help us to faithfully share that good news with others. Amen.
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