August 27, 2012

By Phil Maynard

I was sitting in my preferred seat (the nosebleed section) of the annual denominational meeting of my tribe with a lot of other bored people.  Then it happened.

The smell of fresh popcorn wafted across the aisle.  The little girl enjoying her snack had no idea the impact she was about to make…

I whispered to my neighbor how good some popcorn would taste right about then.  Apparently I wasn’t the only one having that thought.

One by one, about half a dozen people from the section of seats around the little girl went to the concession stand and got their own popcorn!

I have to admit….I got one “to go” for the ride home.

It struck me as I was enjoying my snack what an interesting witness the little girl had been.  She didn’t preach to anyone about the value of having a snack.  She didn’t hand out any bags of popcorn kernals to thank people for “popping by” and to encourage people to get a popcorn for themselves.  She didn’t gather a study group to explore the benefits of eating popcorn.

She was simply being herself…exhibiting a perfectly natural behavior for a child of about 6 years of age.

Yet people were encouraged to discover the joy for themselves.

I wonder if that’s at least part of what Jesus meant when he said “you are the salt of the earth”?

One of the keys to being ‘salt’ in our communities, to inviting others to discover the joy of a relationship with Jesus, to developing congregations that make an impact on their communities is to have mature disciples that reflect the heart of God for this world.

Over the next few weeks I will be sharing some thoughts around developing mature disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.  For now, consider the following question:

How have you behaved in such a way today that people were encouraged to discover the joy of Jesus for themselves?