When the gospel happens

th-1Sister Helen Prejean, author of Dead Man Walking whose story was dramatized in the movie by the same title is a short, spunky woman with a passion for justice and a story of how God dragged her into a life-changing relationship with a prisoner on death row. She tells the story of how one of her colleagues encouraged her to write a letter to a prisoner, which she did, thinking little of it. Then she went on to explain how that letter had altered the course of her life. She put it in the simplest terms: he wrote back, they developed a relationship, and the gospel of Jesus happened.

I was immediately captivated by the simple thought that our relationships are the place where the gospel of Jesus happens. I believe this is true, and I believe it can happen in many different ways and on many different levels.

When does the gospel of Jesus happen? Any time someone is affirmed, any time value is attributed to a human being, any time forgiveness is extended, any time love is spoken, any time you remove a speck from someone else’s eye because you just had a log taken out of your own, any time patience wins out, any time justice is done, any time the hungry are fed, the naked are clothed, and the good news is preached to the poor. Any time someone writes back.

In the case of Sister Prejean, the gospel of Jesus started with an introduction and saved a man for eternity, setting her on a course to reach many others is similar circumstances.

It’s an active gospel. It happened a couple thousand years ago. It will happen today thousands of times. Be a part of it. Be looking for how and with whom the gospel of Jesus might happen in your life today. Someone is waiting.

He wrote back, they developed a relationship, and the gospel of Jesus happened. What else is there?

This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to When the gospel happens

  1. Mark S. says:

    i’ll throw my two cents in answering this question: “What else is there?” sooooooooooooooo much more as you wrote Pastor John: “…they developed a relationship, and the gospel of Jesus happened.” In developing that relationship both Sister Helen Prejean and the prisoner, i imagine both grew closer to the Lord – and it’s that one of the most ‘coolest’ part when we extend our arms to reach out to help someone else, those altristic (sp?) feels @ times are over wheming…

  2. Andrew P. says:

    I’m struck by your choice of phrase, John: “the gospel happened.” I suspect if we began thinking more in terms like this, more gospel would happen!

  3. Rick G. says:

    Just re-read the Prayer of Jabez and this reminded me to be on the lookout for opportunities even if you have no idea what to say or do. Just be willing and let Jesus put words into your mouth. I hope I can.

    • Mark S. says:

      Brother Rick let me plz add to what you wrote: “I hope I can.” I know you can! Not only because I throughly believe in the power of the Holy Spirit. The one that will en-power you, yet too, I know He believes in you, as I do too… 🙂

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.