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What is the gospel?

The people were waiting expectantly and were all wondering in their hearts if John might possibly be the Christ. John answered them all, “I baptize you with water. But one more powerful than I will come, the thongs of whose sandals I am not worthy to untie. (Luke 3:15-16)

Don’t take this the wrong way, but I wonder if anyone ever mistook me for Christ? John boldly spoke such truth into people’s lives that their hearts were stirred and they thought maybe he was the Christ. Is it possible that followers of Jesus are to become people who others are waiting expectantly for? People who are compelling and magnetic, transformed, and overflowing with truth and love?

That was a life that I never thought could be possible. Until several years ago when I met a man who believed in me more than I could ever believe in him. He saw into the depths of my heart and kept reaching in. He pulled me out from my sins and told me of a life beyond anything I could imagine. He called me out to follow him, living out my life to the fullest while giving it all way. He said that I would walk this earth being a bearer of good news impacting the hearts of men and women and telling them his name is Jesus.

The good news though is not really that my life has been saved, and not really that God is creating a service commune to change the world. It’s that when others look to me, and they see any shadow of goodness, truth, love, and beauty in my life, that the really, really, good news is that the one who called me out is the source of goodness, truth, love, beauty, and even life itself. To echo John, he is so great ‘his sandals I am not even worth to untie’. Yet he bends down to reveal himself to all those who earnestly seek him. Jesus is the gospel. And the good news is that whether we stumble and fall or tragedies hit, there is a God who passionately pursues us with his love in this life and to all eternity.

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