I realized and i keep realizing how much people need to simply know they're loved. When it comes to my preaching style, i like it best when the preacher is direct, presents the true gospel and gets to the point. Thats MY preferred method. I don't like it when speakers take 30 minutes to say something i can say in 2 minutes. I know i'm loved by God and i'm His son and so i don't need to hear that. Well, that's great... for me.
But there are a lot of hurting people out there. Many who have been hurt by neglect and/or careless words said to them. And while sometimes a simple direct word is needed (which is where i come in to play at), sometimes an arm around a shoulder does the trick as well. Sometimes, someone just needs you to listen to them and actually give them the time of day.
I also want to bring up another case in point: the idea of what's known as 'greasy grace'. Where you can basically do whatever your little heart desires and still be a Christian. I don't like the idea of people in general getting tattooes, or excessive piercings. I think it makes you look hideous. Can you get in to heaven w/ a tattoo and piercings... sure. Salvation is a free gift of grace by faith. It's not done by works. But soo many people have the idea of that you can go get hammered in a bar and still get into heaven.
Ultimately, God is our judge. And soo often people wanna say "well, you can't judge them.." oh yeah? Then why did the Apostle Paul tell us to expel the immoral brother? And why do we have people called 'judges' in the land? I can remember one time doing an outreach at a Charlotte Pride (a homosexual gathering) and these ladies came up to our group, handed us a pamphlet of some kind and point at our group leader and point their finger at him and yell "Don't judge me!" i found it highly ironic b/c she was judging us in the process of telling us not to judge... anywho...
We are to judge. We all do it anyways. We are to make wise decisions as far as whats going on and how we are to handle it. I can't think of how to explain it at the minute.
One instance where i can think of in the Bible where we can't judge is with the lady caught in adultery and Jesus said "let him who has never sinned throw the first stone... everyone eventually left without stoning here... and Jesus eventually told the lady to go and SIN NO MORE."
Perhaps your wondering how i went from the love of God to judging. Well, perhaps its because people have this distorted view of the love of God. Some think that how could an all loving God send someone to Hell? Perhaps its because He loves you enough to maintain a standard. Hell wasn't created for you. It was created for satan and his minions (demons... fallen angels). But you ever hear the phrase "misery loves company"? Well, satan basically wants company there. Too bad there won't be any partying going on in hell. Just a whole lot of weaping and torture. How many times do you hear THAT from the pulpit? (I'm not going there right now... although i'm really tempted to). But God loves you enough as a Father to maintain discipline. He wants you to want Him. He wants you to choose Him. Which is one reason why we are all not just saved right now. He's not going to force you to choose Him. He wants you to want to choose Him. He's a relational God.
I've found that one of my favorite ways to evangelize people is to simply spend time with them. Go out to eat or go and do something with the person. Perhaps thats because i'm one of those people who can't sit still in church. And people would most likely get bored there or it just feels very nonrelational. (I'm not AGAINST taking an unsaved person to church, i'm just saying its not one of my favorite ways of going about the process) Sometimes, i'm running around doing stuff behind the scenes. Or at times i just find church extremely boring.
The other day i was working here on my computer, and my little 'sister' Alyssa comes and sits down next to me. She goes "can i type something on this really quickly?" i said sure and gave her the computer for a minute. she does "don't look!" so i looked away and she types "can you play with me tomorrow after school?" My heart broke. i was like here i am w/ a chance to invest in someones life and i'm too busy. i hate that. i love to get chances to play here w/ the girls. they teach me soo much about the Father's heart. It's soo precious.
Anyways, that's it for now. I'm sure i'll think of stuff later on. g'nite.