Changing the World Around You
By Fernando Gutierrez
A few years ago I was ministering in a church in New Orleans and something happened that impacted my life. After service we went to eat with the pastor’s family and the pastor’s daughter, shaking and with tears in her eyes told me something that I will never forget. The message I preached that day was about “Changing Your World by Serving People”. She said that she has been feeling sad and tired of seeing unbelievers reject the message of salvation. After listening to the message, she understood God’s plan to change the world. She realized that loving and serving people was the way to bring them into the kingdom of God.
Changing our world is going to take more than words. Jesus said in John 13:34-35: “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”
Words can only do so much. Love has to be shown and expressed with actions and not just words. We cannot talk people into the kingdom; we have to love them into the kingdom. Expressing love means that we have to roll our sleeves and work hard, and sometimes we have to get dirty with people’s problems.
There is nothing wrong with proclaiming the Gospel; I do it many times a week. It is necessary to verbally witness to people. Sometimes that’s all we can do because of lack of time. The point is that in order to change the world around us, we must express love through actions.
God seriously wants to use us to change our world.
- We have to love the people. Some people love the ministry, but not the people.
- Talk to people with a smile. A smile can open the door to someone’s heart.
- Serve them through different acts of kindness. Let the Holy Spirit guide you in seeing the needs of others.
- Be by their side when they are suffering. Hebrews 13:3 says: “Continue to remember those in prison as if you were together with them in prison and those who are mistreated as if you yourselves were suffering”.
- Visit them in the hospitals.
- Visit the widows and the orphans. James 1:27 says: “Religion that is pure and good before God the Father is to help children who have no parents and to care for women whose husbands have died who have troubles. Pure religion is also to keep yourself clean from the sinful things of the world”.
- Look at them with eyes full of love.
- Speak words of encouragement and not of doom.
Remember that these things are just the bridge to bring people to Christ. We know that the only one that can bring conviction to a person is the Holy Spirit. Jesus said: “But very truly I tell you, it is for your good that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Advocate will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you. 8 When he comes, he will prove the world to be in the wrong about sin and righteousness and judgment: 9 about sin, because people do not believe in me; 10 about righteousness, because I am going to the Father, where you can see me no longer; 11 and about judgment, because the prince of this world now stands condemned. 12 “I have much more to say to you, more than you can now bear. 13 But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all the truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come (John 16:7-13)." Lean on the Holy Spirit and allow God to change the world through you.