Preaching is very powerful. And yet, so often it feels as though it is just words. It’s actually a miracle that faith lives in Christians at all. Think about this for a moment. On one side you have someone who is a regular church goer – let’s say they even come every week (even though that is no longer the norm). They pay attention the entire worship service. They listen intently to the sermon and the readings and sing all the hymns. In that amount of time, they are exposed to the Gospel for approximately one hour. There are other times during the week that a person is also exposed to the Gospel too. It’s not just worship.
But that same person is exposed to multiple alternate gospel messages. Messages the focus on division, strife, anger, fear, separation, disbelief, stress, competition, force, might makes right, judgement, violence, death, and more. These messages inundate a person throughout each day – hour after hour.
Compare these two things – the Gospel versus other gospel messages. You quickly see that the Gospel doesn’t get nearly the time that other messages do – the Gospel get far less of a person’s attention daily. Yet, the Gospel takes hold in many people. Clearly, this is more than just a good sermon. It’s God’s work.
Which leads to the main point – the words we hear, the Gospel message we hear, are more than just words. They are transformative and change lives. I see this when I hear or see someone take the message they receive and start to do something with it. Words cause action.
Over the last few days I’ve been in discussion with various people of faith about how the words we talk about can turn into action. The conversations all center around how the words we speak and write are about changing the tone and attitude of our political world, bringing respect and humility into our political discourse – listening if you will. The conversations talk about how we incorporate faith into the conversations about policy – but in a different way. Not in a way to manipulate people or policy, but rather in something else. If I had to define it, I would say affecting the process of how politics is done. To move away from the divisive nature, arching towards corrupt deals, and more towards transparency and approaching politics with faith. It starts with one person, but it can’t go anywhere with only one.
What do you think can be done? What are you willing to do? Let’s talk and see how our faith can turn into action. It’s not about advancing either political party. It’s about living out our faith, living out grace, approaching others as children of God. I want to talk with you if you are interested.