Therefore, Evangelize!

 Why are we here on this earth, in this universe? Who put us here? What are we supposed to do? We can’t do any better than to have these questions in mind as we gather in this church building every Sunday morning and seek the presence of God. Why are we here? Why are you here?

In answer to this question, Robert McAfee Brown once wrote: “I believe we are placed here to be companions–a wonderful word that comes from the Latin cum panis, ‘with bread.’ We are here to share bread with one another so that everyone has enough, no one has too much…. There are many names for such sharing companionship, the Body of Christ, the Kingdom of God, the Communion of Saints. And while the goal is too vast to be realized fully on this planet, it is still our task to create foretastes of it in this world. We are to generate living glimpses of what life is meant to be….” 

We are placed here to share bread with one another, and to do that, I believe that we must be not merely companions but evangelizing companions: we must tell each other where the bread is. And God wants us to do it boldly, with thanksgiving. That’s how we generate living glimpses of what life is meant to be.

I like D.T. Niles’ definition of evangelism best: “one beggar telling another beggar where to get food.  How do beggars tell each other where the food is? What do you think? Like this? Conspiratorially–Psst, over there…at the Methodist Church. What? Not so loud…the bread from heaven…over there. I can’t hear you…Where? Oh, get away from me….

No–that’s not how they do it! They do it like this, the way beggar companions or an evangelizing company of beggars do it. Wow! Look at what I got. Mmmmm….It’s great! Oh, it’s so wonderful! Well, tell me…where is it? Oh, my God…I’m so excited I can hardly talk. My mouth is so full…Over there! The bread of life! Manna! Where, over there? Follow me. Gosh, this is killing me, it’s so good. Have some! Try some! Thank you, Jesus!

Or we might take a lesson from bees: One bee telling another bee where the nectar is. Do you know how they do it? They dance. Bees communicate by doing a curious dance, an excited dance. When witnessed by another bee, that bee knows where to go.

Over in farmer John’s pasture. Fly over that cottonwood tree over there, then turn right, and there, it’s clover everywhere!