LENT DAY 30

Preach It by Breanna Murphy

What marvelous love the Father has extended to us! Just look at it—we’re called children of God! That’s who we really are. But that’s also why the world doesn’t recognize us or take us seriously, because it has no idea who he is or what he’s up to. But friends, that’s exactly who we are: children of God. And that’s only the beginning. Who knows how we’ll end up! What we know is that when Christ is openly revealed, we’ll see him—and in seeing him, become like him. All of us who look forward to his Coming stay ready, with the glistening purity of Jesus’ life as a model for our own.

(1 John 3:1-3 The Message MSG)

Something really cool happened to me the other day.

I was driving around with Leah, and we were doing random errands. We had to go pick something up, so I phoned ahead to speak with a company representative before we headed there later that afternoon.

When we arrived at the business, the man behind the desk greeted us, and after we introduced ourselves, he said “Oh! We spoke on the phone. You’re the girls with so much joy!” That took me by surprise - I think we were both having really good days, and I was probably just abnormally enthusiastic on the phone earlier!

We laughed and thanked him for saying that, and started the payment process for what we were picking up. All of a sudden, he took a step back and said “I recognize you two…Southside right?”

It turns out that he had been to our church a couple of times. In that moment, I was so thankful that I had been kind on the phone. I remember that I had taken the extra time to ask how his day was going, and hadn’t rushed to get off the phone like I’m so often tempted to do. I was reminded that how I live my life is a sermon to the people I come in contact with and that I’m supposed to “preach it”. The extra effort that I had (randomly and abnormally) put into a phone call had a positive reflection for our church and for God - and I had no way of predicting that.

In the smallest ways, God asks us to preach about how awesome He is. People without God aren’t used to joy and kindness. The more people I talk to, the more I realize how lonely and isolated so many people are.

“Be kind, for everyone you know is fighting a great battle.” - we say that all the time at Southside. Everyday I see that a little clearer. We actually live in a broken world, and everyone is facing struggles, no matter how put-together they may seem.

I’m praying, for myself and for you, for more opportunities like the one I mentioned. It stands out to me in my life because it’s not commonplace for me, but I want it to become normal! When we lead with God’s love and joy, people are going to take note.

What are some areas of your life where you can lead with more joy and influence the people around you?

Prayer: Thank you Jesus that something so simple can impact people. There’s a void in this world that is missing: joy, authenticity and kindness. Remind us to go the extra mile and to draw from Your strength - even in the mundane tasks of ordinary life. Thank you that You are extraordinary, and for the extraordinary love you give to all of us. Amen.