“it will not be you speaking” {Maggie}

It’s summertime. The sun is shining, the birds are chirping, and I am sitting out on my back porch writing this blog. When I think of the idea of “summer”, it is filled with sunscreen, relaxation by the pool, and reunions with friends from home. But since coming off a year of being surrounded by such a strong Christian community at CNU, I realize that it’s different here…my community of believers has gone down to my family and me, and that two-mile radius of friends who love the Lord aren’t here. At first I felt homesick (home being Newport News with all of my friends), but then I realized most of them had gone home for the summer too. God has you and I at home for a reason. My two-mile radius of people up here in Northern VA, is full of broken people who don’t know the Lord. I realized while being here, God wants to use me to reach out to those people.
            A few nights ago, I was showing my parents small group the Cru Perspective cards. After everyone had left, I forgot to put the cards away, and left them sitting on the kitchen counter. Later that night my brother’s friend came over to hang out. It was around midnight when I decided to call it a night and we all were standing around the counter talking while I was trying to sneak away and go get in my comfy bed…when he asked, “what are those?”- referring the perspective cards. In my head I was like gosh I’m tired and I need to sleep…But God was tugging on my heart saying that this was literally an opportunity to share the gospel that was handed to me on a platter since he brought it up. So thankfully that got me super excited, and I proceeded to explain to him that this was a survey that I use to start spiritual convos on campus. After about a minute of just trying to explain what it was, I asked if I could just do the survey with him, and he agreed. This led to a really great conversation with him, my brother and me. If I was talking, Graham was praying, and if he and his friend were talking, I was praying. IT WAS SO COOL.
16 “I am sending you out like sheep among wolves. Therefore be as shrewd as snakes and as innocent as doves. 17 Be on your guard; you will be handed over to the local councils and be flogged in the synagogues. 18 On my account you will be brought before governors and kings as witnesses to them and to the Gentiles. 19 But when they arrest you, do not worry about what to say or how to say it. At that time you will be given what to say, 20 for it will not be you speaking, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you.

            Matthew 10: 16-20 speaks about persecution as Christians. Now, we won’t be handed over for flogging here, but the point I wanted to draw out is that as Christians, we have the Holy Spirit in us. God uses the spirit to speak through us. So don’t be afraid to reach out to a friend who doesn’t know the Lord, a neighbor who has never been to church, or your grandma who you get to spend time with this summer. No matter where you are, or what you are doing this summer, you are on a mission to share Jesus with others. I challenge you to think of a couple people in that two-mile radius that you could start a spiritual conversation with. God wants to use you, and He will. The Holy Spirit will guide your speech, so you don’t need to worry about what to say. Don’t let fear keep you from sharing the gospel! We don’t have to be afraid because God is with us. Always.

Bringing the Gospel Home (Brooke) & GIVEAWAY!!!

I wonder if you are already feeling a little weary & a little bummed and it’s only a few weeks into the summer.  You had all these hopes of being a LIGHT to your family(or friends)–of serving and praying and sharing and all you feel like you’ve done is sleep, watch Netflix, and go get froyo(those are excellent things btw!)  Don’t worry- each day brings new mercies and new opportunities to love your family. Don’t believe the lie that you have “already blown your witness” or “you have already missed too many opportunities” or “you have already been too unloving.”  You can make a plan today to reach your family with the hope of Christ—no matter how difficult you feel it is to love those closest to you and no matter how unloving you feel you have been.

You are the light of the world–like a city on a hilltop that can not be hidden.  Matthew 5:14

I found this list here—it offers 10 ways to continue to be a light to your family while you are home–I think it was written with Christmas break in mind but all the principles still apply.

ALSO, today is a GIVEAWAY day and 2 *lucky* winners will receive a copy of the book “Bringing the Gospel Home” by Randy Newman.  It’s an excellent book about how to love and share the gospel with your family.  Here is what Randy Newman says, Whenever I have spoken about evangelism, the number one question I get asked is, “How do I witness to my family.” Often the question is posed with tears and anguish. So I decided to tackle this emotionally charged topic by focusing on the goodness of the gospel, the high priority of family, and the complexity of communication. My goal in writing this book is to offer people hope by pointing them to scripture and telling a variety of stories of others who have witnessed to family.”

Also, just for fun both winners will receive 8 cute note cards with envelopes, a role of washi tape, and a journal!

To enter to WIN:
1. comment below by Sunday(6/8) at 5 pm with your favorite fro-yo topping and your email address.   Winners will be picked at random on Sunday night & emailed with the happy news! 
2.You must be a college student that goes to school in the Tidewater area(ODU,CNU, W&M, VWC, TCC, TNCC) or Richmond, VA area to enter to win.
3. Thanks and LOVE! xoxo