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Spring into action

May 5, 2008

by Rev. Bill Hillyer, Saving Grace Lutheran Church, Delano

For a few days a couple of weeks ago, I caught it. But then, Minnesota was graced with a few more days of snow, and I lost it.

I’m hoping to catch it again – hopefully soon! I’m talking about spring fever.

And after a long, cold, bleak winter – we Minnesotans deserve a nice spring! Here in Minnesota, spring seems to pass by so quickly that if a person doesn’t deliberately step out and enjoy the few wonderful weeks of spring, they will miss it.

Spring compels people to do all sorts of things. They are driven to get outdoors and start working in the yard, plant spring flowers, and even take down the Christmas decorations from last year.

One of my favorite sights and sounds of spring is motorcycles passing by on the highway. When the temperatures warm, I, too, am compelled to dust off my aging ‘83 Gold Wing, charge up the battery, and go for a nice, leisurely drive. There’s nothing better than spring fever.

The Apostle Paul tells us that he was driven by a fever, too. When it came to preaching the Good News of Jesus Christ, Paul says that he was compelled to share the message with others: “Yet when I preach the gospel, I cannot boast, for I am compelled to preach. Woe to me if I do not preach the gospel.” (1 Corinthians 9:16 NIV).

You see, Paul was under direct orders from the Lord to preach the gospel. Before Paul was baptized, the Lord told Ananias that, “This man is my chosen instrument to carry my name before the Gentiles and their kings and before the people of Israel.” (Acts 9:15 NIV).

All of us who call ourselves Christian are also under orders to share the Good News of Jesus with others. It isn’t just apostles like Paul, or your pastor, or church workers – all believers have been called to share the gospel.

As Jesus was preparing to ascend back into heaven, he left his followers with this final command: “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. So wherever you go, make disciples of all nations: baptize them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Teach them to do everything I have commanded you. And remember that I am always with you until the end of time.” (Matthew 28:18-20 God’s Word)

As you enjoy the outdoors this spring, and while you’re getting reacquainted with your neighbors and the workers at your favorite outdoor center, take the time to welcome them to attend church this Sunday. Help them become reacquainted with the One who created spring!

Christ has blessed us in so many ways, including the gifts of forgiveness and eternal life, it is only natural that we feel compelled to respond to His love by telling others all about Him. May the love of Christ compel you to share His love.