This has been a ‘mission-filled’ weekend! I need to share how I got I came to this conclusion: QUIT BEING SO WEIRD!
I knew that I was going to attend our Association Missions Fair on Saturday and that I would hear one our missionaries speak in church on Sunday, but what I didn’t know is how the concert my friend Tammy invited me to on Friday would be the catalyst for the entire weekend.
On Friday, Tammy called and reminded me that we were going to this concert and I had totally forgotten. My other plans could be shifted around so off I went to Northwestern College to hear some folksy worship band from Ireland that I couldn’t even remember the name of. As I waited for Tammy and her friend, Kelly, to get there, I people watched. It was intriguing to see the interactions of the people and the excitement they were sharing about this new group that they couldn’t wait to hear. I was hoping that the band would be good but I was more interested in spending time with my friend since it had been a while since I had seen her. As I watched the crowds, there were many college students, which was appropriate since I was on a college campus, but I felt a little out of place– I am a mother of two college kids after all and felt like I was encroaching on ‘their crowd’ (even though both kids go to school much further away) and I felt old. I was relieved as I continued to look around to see that there were a few people in their middle ages like me so I relaxed.
Then Tammy and Kelly arrived. Kelly asked who were seeing anyway (glad to hear that I wasn’t the old one who had forgotten)! Tammy began to explain about the group, “Rend Collective Experiment” from Ireland that traveled around and only brought 5 members of their band with them whenever they toured. She had heard about them on hearitfirst.com and found out that they were going to be in concert soon at Northwestern so she bought some tickets and by the way, there is a speaker too…Frances Chan. “Get out of here!” Kelly exclaimed. We looked at her with a questioning ‘okay?’ on our faces and she continued. “He is this awesome Pastor from CA. He wrote this book, Crazy Love. You should read it. It will rock your world!” We had no clue where our night out would take us but we were soon going to find out.
The band came on and made a quick introduction of the group and started playing. Their Irish accents were a thick brogue so you had to listen carefully. I was relieved that the words were on the screens on both sides of the auditorium so we could follow and sing along – otherwise, I probably wouldn’t have enjoyed them as much. The music artistically was excellent and the words were pulling at my soul. Their band members were switching instruments every other song and one young lady even played a metal garbage can and an accordian–in the same song!! It was so crazy but oh so inspiring!
(In this picture: Rend Collective and Rachel Chan- Side note: She is Frances Chan’s 16 year old daughter- this was her first concert! She sang a few songs by herself. She has a beautiful voice & is very talented! Hard to believe that she is only 16 – definitely a young Christian artist to watch in the years to come).
Next up, Frances Chan got on the stage to speak. He wasn’t much taller than his 16 year old daughter but a very talented speaker and he packs a great punch! He talked about how we need to share our faith with those around us. So many of us are scared to open our mouths and tell others about God and His Son, Jesus – the most important relationship we have and yet we are scared. He shared how even he was scared to talk to this young lady on the plane a seat away from him when he was on the way to a pastor’s conference to speak about being BOLD. He felt bad speaking about being ‘Bold’ and here he was unable to share Christ with this young lady. Then God did an amazing thing and put the same young lady in the seat next to him on the plane ride home! The young lady thought it was such a coincidence but Frances began to share about how it had to be God and not just a coincidence.
And then he said to us, “We need to QUIT BEING SO WEIRD!” It sounded kinda odd at first but when you really think about it –why wouldn’t we tell others about Christ? I mean really- we can talk about the new pair of shoes or a sweater we got, our favorite team who just won the Super Bowl or our kid’s big accomplishment at school but we can’t tell others about the MOST IMPORTANT RELATIONSHIP OF ALL????? His text was the popular, GREAT COMMISSION, from Matt. 28:18-20. The disciples had just seen their LORD die on a cross, rose again and now he was standing before them and telling them to ‘go and MAKE DISCIPLES’. They needed to teach others to obey all that Christ has commanded. AND this has a promise included–He would be with them, always – even to the end of the age! (vs 20) They needed to QUIT BEING SO WEIRD by being scared because Jesus was with them wherever they go. They needed to quit standing around and do something! And I/we need to do likewise!
To wrap up the weekend, our missionary, Teresa Hamlin, spoke and then our Pastor talked about being called to serve. Jesus is calling you now. It may not be to another country but you can share Him and serve those around you right where you are. Are you ready to QUIT BEING SO WEIRD and share with those around you about the most important person in your lives??