Fall Retreat 2016: Believe Out Loud
I’m here to share with you that evangelism isn’t a scary thing, it is just “good news.” This weekend, Wesley retreated to Camp Dickenson to spend a weekend looking out at the beautiful views of rain and clouds and to focus on what it means to Believe Out Loud through acts of evangelism. To me, a life of evangelism and of living out your faith is a conscious decision each day to put Christ first and share his love with others. It’s a decision to be vulnerable with others, to be a good friend, to be welcoming (even when you have a lot on your plate), to be intentional with every word and action, and to give all of the glory where it is due.
This weekend, I was challenged by this message of living out our beliefs through love and action. It is so easy to be completely focused on God in mountaintop settings like retreats or mission trips. But our challenge, this week and forever, is to continue to put Christ first even when we’re not surrounded by a community of faith. We have to share the good news, even when it may be a little uncomfortable or awkward.
So you may be asking why and how? I don’t have all of the answers, and in fact I don’t have many, but these are the things that I strive to do in my life. We need our actions to reflect our beliefs because the world needs us. If we share everything else we love with friends, why not share the most important thing in eternity-our Savior Jesus Christ? How can we share the good news to our friends, to those coming to Wesley, and to the Virginia Tech community? We can be a good friend and always be present. We can lift our friends up in prayer, listen to them in their struggles, and share how we rely on Christ’s strength to get through our own trials. We can pray for opportunities to share the good news with them and pray that God will move and make Himself known in their lives. We can share the good news with everyone who comes to Wesley by being welcoming, by talking to people who walk through the doors even if it isn’t their first time there. We can share the good news with the Virginia Tech community by moving our faith outside the four walls of Wesley, by living out their faith through actions, and by showing kindness and grace.
I want to close with one of my favorite verses in the Bible, which is my hope and prayer for Wesley. Jesus said, “Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these” (John 14:12). This is the hope that I steadfastly hold onto and my vision for Wesley, that we can take these teachings and go do greater things in our community.