by David Phelps
“Do not wait for leaders; do it alone, person to person.” – Mother Teresa
A few months ago, our four-and-a-half-year-old daughter, Monica, and I were in a store together. We were in the jewelry department, and Monica decided she wanted to get her mom something for Mother’s Day. After a few minutes, she picked out a pair of earrings. They were quite nice, heart shaped in natural blue shell. (Ask Charlotte to show them to you the next time you see her wearing a blue dress.) Unfortunately, Monica is still a bit too young to understand or fully appreciate what a “secret” is. At the first opportunity, she ran up to her mom and yelled, “Hey, Mommy, guess what color the earrings are we got you for Mother’s Day?!” Fortunately, I was able to keep her from revealing the color, so Charlotte at least got a small surprise.
Some of us are a lot like Monica sometimes. When we know something good, something special, something juicy, we can’t wait to tell someone. We love to share the latest news. But as Christians, we know the best news of all—the “Good News” of Jesus Christ.
In a recent sermon, our pastor, Rachel, said that the people in Jesus’ time heard about him by way of “word of mouth.” (Mark 5:21-43). She asked if people are hearing about Jesus from us, and challenged us to tell them.
I’m repeating that challenge now. We need to tell the folks around us the “Good News.” The people who came to Jesus had needs, they were suffering, they were desperate: A man whose daughter was dying (Mark 5:22-23); a woman who had been bleeding for years (Mark 5:25-27); and a multitude of others (Mark 6:54-56). People are still suffering, still desperate today. They need to hear the “Good News” about the one who can heal the deepest hurt, dry the saddest tear, reconcile the most broken relationship, and forgive the most grievous sin.
Jesus told his disciples to “‘Go into all the world and preach the gospel to the whole creation.’” (Mark 16:15b) This is news that can’t wait. It’s hot. It’s juicy. It’s earth-shaking. As they used to say in the newspaper business, it’s a “scoop,” and we are called to be God’s reporters. The people have a “right to know,” and we have an obligation to spread the “Good News.”
“For necessity is laid upon me. Woe to me if I do not preach the gospel!” (I Cor. 9:16b RSV.)