19 May 2020Acts 13:13-41
... by this Jesus everyone who believes is set free from all those sins from which you could not be freed by the law of Moses. (v. 39)
Psalm: Psalm 45
Acts 13 focuses on the beginning of Paul's ministry, his transformation from Saul to Paul, his response to the call of the Holy Spirit and his evangelistic response to this. Paul takes on a leadership role on his first ministry journey modelling gospel characteristics in this mission and ministry. This must have felt huge and scary, new in leadership and travelling huge distances to share the gospel and to challenge strangers from different backgrounds and cultures to believe and change how they live in response to this. The Holy Spirit was visible, physical and active during this journey and Paul and the others were alive with it and open to acknowledging and seeing it at work in the transformation of those they preached to. This really speaks to me in my faith and discipleship – to be alive to the presence of God, to notice and to listen and to be aware of more than me in the everyday. I realise that my discipleship is a physical, active and visible response to God rather than a verbal response. My first leadership experience was aged 13 and gifted to me by my Girls' Brigade leaders. I was challenged, mentored and encouraged to step out in faith. I am still a leader in the Girls' Brigade. I find it easier to show and share the gospel by creating and facilitating flexible open spaces of exploration and awe and wonder in the everyday. Facilitating children and young people in learning spaces with adults using all our senses and expressions of humanness to notice God, spaces where we are learning with each other and from each other. Rather than just word filled spaces.
The evangelistic methods expressed in this chapter challenge an immersing in gospel living, sharing and transforming lives through being inclusive communities; learning, dialogue, physical action, modelling and response in equal measure.
Paul was determined and driven he modelled inclusion in his ministry. He used Old Testament prophecy alongside the new gospel story to make sense of this new word from God. He summarised the ministry of John the Baptist and then introduced Jesus and the gospel. He was consistent in his message and preached about transformation through belief. He was relational and passionate and lived out his calling in the way he behaved and talked.
Penny Fuller, Co-ordinator: Children, Youth and Family Team
- What was your first leadership experience ? Why and how did you respond to it ?
- What do you consider to be the evangelistic characteristics that Paul expresses ?
- What does Pauls model of evangelism say to you ?
- Where do you see models of this early model of ministry and mission occurring in our Church today ?