A Pastor's Perspective 09-12-2023

Recently, deeply concerned Jesus followers have created an advertising campaign that points directly to the Light of the World, the Hope of Heaven. They have done so most creatively and thoughtfully. The campaign is called "He Gets Us", and I have written about it once before. The campaign is designed with great intention to allow believers to share the Good News of Jesus by presenting a problem in this world and how Jesus understands that problem. Thanks to the "He Gets Us" campaign and the in-depth biblical resources on its website, believers all over our country now have the opportunity to present the plan of salvation and have a Good News conversation with people they care about.
Response to these ads, however, has been interesting. In a podcast a former Baptist-turned-atheist, rails against them. Her concerns and need to discredit the campaign, I get. It’s harder for me to understand the pushback from Christians who say the ads don’t go far enough because they leave people without a complete presentation of the Good News. They are 30 to 60 second spots not meant to be comprehensive, but rather to spark consideration of Je­sus, and conversations about Jesus. Each commercial ends with a web address containing Bible reading plans and other Christ-centered resources. These negative responses from Christians have perplexed and disappointed me for awhile; but I am now starting to wonder if it’s because they see “belief in Jesus”, as solely dependent upon the transfer of information and indoctrination more than an introduction to Jesus established in the nurture of a relationship. A commercial will never satisfy this measure, but it can initiate a conversation where the Word becomes flesh and dwells among us.
Yes, the Good News story comes alive in sermons, lectures and one-way, track-type presentations. I strive for that each Sunday. And certainly, Jesus Himself, preached and presented but it was not His singular pattern. Jesus also had conversations and exchanges with individuals where He obviously “got”, or understood the people with which He was conversing.
Over the next five weeks, we will consider some of these conversations and short exchanges Jesus had with people. Seeing how Jesus speaks with those "He Gets" will encourage and inform us to have the same type of conversations with the people God places us around - especially those you are praying will Discover God. 
Please begin praying for the conversations you will have and for those you will invite to church during this series. Some are people you know; others you will meet along the way. Your invitation will show that you care enough for that person to share your Sunday morning with them, allowing them to encounter a God who "gets them" and loves them.
I look forward to meeting your friends in the coming weeks.
Gratefully, Blake
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