Day 7 - March 3
Wm. R. "Mac" McKenney
WTS M.Div., 2018; Associate Pastor, Good Shepherd UMC, Dale City, VA.
|Superpower:||Center, Varsity Basketball, Wesley Theological Seminary (undefeated since 1882)|
If necessary ~ Isaiah 55: 6-11
I saw an image on Facebook the other day – a picture of St. Francis in a rough tunic surrounded by animals captioned – “Preach the Gospel at all times. If necessary, use memes.” The admonition to preach the Gospel and “if necessary, use words” is often attributed to St. Francis of Assisi, but there is no evidence that he ever said it. In fact, the earliest published source for this quote dates all the way back to the 1990s.
As much as I would like to think that anyone who has seen me separating my recyclables from my trash – or noticed that I am kind to animals and patient with children – would immediately leap to the conclusion that a loving God entered history in the person of Jesus Christ to redeem creation, I’m not going to hold my breath.
Come to think of it, Jesus himself, whose life provides the strongest testimony of anyone who ever lived, shared the Good News in words. Lots of them.
So, while we want to live in such a way that “they will know we are Christians by our love,” we also need to share the Good News in words. To be sure, people will watch what we do, but if we walk the talk, they will listen as well. And if we are worried about choosing just the right time or place or words, we can find comfort in Isaiah’s assurance that God’s word never returns empty, but always accomplishes God’s purpose.