When I was a teen ager in the 90’s the cool thing to do was to have a life verse. You know some verse that summarized what you were about spiritually. My life verse looking back was exactly how I lived my life. 2 Timothy 2:22 “Flee the evil desires of youth and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace, along with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart.” Mostly what I remember is the fleeing. I stayed far away from the “bad crowd” so that I was not like them, or even associated with them. On the whole it’s not a terrible strategy for a teenager but if, like me, you get to your thirties and you look around and realize that all your friends are either from work (which is church) or from church, or other guys that work in other churches you may have to reevaluate. What got to me was for lack of a better starting place… Jesus.
I realized that the Bible says that Jesus was known as a friend of sinners. That the Pharisees called him a glutton and a drunk because of the company he kept. When I looked at my own life I quickly saw the glaring difference. I didn’t have a single lost friend. That single revelation transformed my life and ministry.
Today if I was ascribing a life verse it’s 2 Corinthians 5:18-20, “All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God.”
We are literally ministers of reconciliation, to the world around us. We have to become friends of sinners so that we can implore them to be reconciled to God. We’re in this to make disciples of all nations.
In terms of teaching, I prefer to tackle the Bible a passage at a time walking through it in an expository fashion. I am committed to bringing the text to life in a way that captivates in the manner that the Word of God should. I employ humor to engage the listeners believing that if they are attentive to the humor they will also be for the truth. Above all I attempt to be a faithful messenger of God’s Word and trust that the Holy Spirit will use it to change lives.