I wrote my first bible study years ago when I lived in Houston and attended @SBCHouston (Second Baptist). My friend and mentor, Becky Henson, saw something in me. She saw a spiritual gifting that I did not even see. And to this day, I am incredibly grateful for her ability to speak life, not only in me but also in many, many others. As I read 2 Corinthians 6:1-10 today, I was reminded of the first bible study I ever penned, encouraged by my dear and precious Jesus-loving friend.
Paul went to great lengths to share the Gospel with the ones he loved. He commended himself to keep going…”by great endurance, in afflictions, hardships, calamities, beatings, imprisonments, riots, labors, sleepless nights, hunger.” Man, it would’ve been so easy to give up and throw in the towel.
But he didn’t. For our benefit, he kept going. And look what the Holy Spirit accomplished as a result…”by purity, knowledge, patience, kindness, the Holy Spirit, genuine love; by truthful speech, and the power of God; with the weapons of righteousness for the right hand and for the left; through honor and dishonor, through slander and praise. We are treated as impostors, and yet are true; as unknown, and yet well known; as dying, and behold, we live; as punished, and yet not killed; as sorrowful, yet always rejoicing; as poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, yet possessing everything.
We have spoken freely to you,Corinthians; our heart is wide open.”
Paul never stopped pouring out his life, lavishly spilling it out to those around him. He worked hard and patiently endured, giving up everything. He kept pressing on in the midst of hardship. He laid it all out on the field. He was transparent and vulnerable. Let’s be THAT kind of person. A person who spills out Jesus to everyone who is in our midst.
Guided by the Holy Spirit.
Abundant in genuine love.
Boldly speaking truthfully.
Proclaiming the Gospel in deed and word.
I want to encourage you today to reach out to someone who has spurred you on to keep going. To keep trucking. To keep your eyes fixed above. That special person who believed in you, possibly even when you gave up on yourself. I bet they don’t hear the simple words “thank you” often enough. Who is that person for you?