How We’re Learning
By Jennifer Wake
The Day after Easter
Springtime is amazing. New plants, new life, newness! It is wonderful to walk outside and see change. Plants come to life. One day there is dirt; the next day there is a plant, a tiny speck of green in the brown. Life is all around in springtime as gardens spring to life.
Gardeners do so much to make gardens grow: planting, spreading mulch, watching and waiting for plants to grow, weeding and cleaning out old dead plants.
When I was younger, I wanted to water quickly and then move on. My mother taught me that watering was something to stand and enjoy. She would remind me that giving young plants too much water would kill them. Instead, watering slowly and carefully would allow the plants to grow.
But no matter how the plants were watered, the key was that they got nourishment. I did what I was told to help the plants. Yet I still worried over what I planted. Would it come up? Would it be eaten by some animal? Would it have enough food to grow?
Springtime is when we celebrate Easter. Easter is when Jesus was crucified and resurrected. Easter weekend must have been terrible for the disciples. They were waiting to see what Jesus would do. He promised to change the world. They knew He was the Son of God. He entered Jerusalem triumphantly. Now they were waiting to see what would come from His death.
Easter Monday would have been a very hard day for the disciples. They had been told Jesus was not in the tomb and they had heard from people they trusted that his body was not in the tomb. Their fear was incapacitating. They must have worried about what would happen next. What would happen to them? Would they be killed too? What did Jesus want them to do next?
In Matthew 28:9-10, we find the women going to the tomb. They met Jesus. Jesus told the women what to do. Without hesitating they did what He said.
And behold, Jesus met them and said, “Greetings!” And they came up and took hold of his feet and worshiped him. Then Jesus said to them, “Do not be afraid; go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee, and there they will see me.”
The women went to the disciples. They knew where the disciples were staying. They told the believers what Jesus said. Then the disciples went to the mountain together. Look at the story in Matthew 28:16-20.
Now the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had directed them. And when they saw him they worshiped him, but some doubted. And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”
Jesus told them what to do. Just as my mother taught me about plants, Jesus taught the disciples what to do very clearly. The gospels don’t say the exact day but I believe that it was very soon after Jesus’s resurrection.
The book of Mark also tells the same message from Jesus.
Mark 16:21-22: And he said to them, “Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation. Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.”
Jesus wanted them to do things in order. Just as my mother taught me how to plant things in the spring, Jesus wanted the disciples to follow his example. My mother taught me to plant seeds, water them, and then tend them so they would grow strong. Jesus also gave the disciples and us a system to share the gospel. He taught them to proclaim the gospel, then baptize, then teach them.
How to Share the Gospel:
- Talk to people about the gospel and what Jesus did for them. Share your testimony. That is how people see God. Your testimony is the most powerful way to share the gospel you have.
- Encourage new believers to get baptized. Baptism is the outward sign of faith.
- Encourage believers to learn from teachers. Going to church and joining Bible study groups help believers learn more about Jesus. This causes our faith to grow and our roots to grow deep.
- Encourage believers to fellowship with other believers. The disciples stayed together after Jesus’s death. They realized they needed each other. Spending time with other believers in small groups helps hold us accountable for changes God is calling us to make.
I used to think I could not grow anything. But as I learned from my mother I became a gardener. As I learn from Jesus I become more willing to share my faith. I am not an evangelist. However, I can share my testimony to friends to plant seeds for God. I can encourage new believers.
Dear Lord, show me who to share my testimony with. Please use me to reach the people around me with your Gospel. Take away my fear and replace it with boldness. In Jesus Name, Amen.
Verses to Ponder:
Review the Romans road on how to present the gospel.