Saturday, March 3, 2012

Finding the holes

In The Hole in Our Gospel, author Richard Stearns shares his confessions about his own spiritual pilgrimage and God's call upon his life.  I'm only about 100 pages into the book now, but it is blowing me away.

The hole in our gospel, as Stearns puts it, is that we are missing a part of Jesus' reason for coming to earth.  In Luke 4, Jesus reads the scripture in the synagogue.  He reads from Isaiah 61.  He reads the passage, then declares that the scripture is fulfilled right then and there in that synagogue. 

The passage declares, "The spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to preach good news to the poor.  He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to release the oppressed, to proclaim the year of the Lord's favor."

Somehow we have missed, or ignored, a critical part of Jesus' mission.  Jesus cares about the poor.  We acknowledge that, but so often we find ways to dismiss our responsibility to bring good news to the poor.  Caring for the poor is central in the gospel.  If we ignore it, there is a hole in our gospel.

Stearns goes on to talk about the hole in himself, which Jesus had to fill.  Jesus is revealing holes in my heart.  He is showing me my brokenness, my wrong thinking, my hard-heartedness.  Ouch.

I'm asking God to show me a people group, somewhere in the world, where he can use me to bring the whole gospel.  People really want to know Jesus.  What a joy to get to be the one who introduces them.