Missiologist, author, professor and pastor Michael Frost spoke at the Exponential East 2014 Conference for church planters in Orlando, Florida this past week. The title of his talk was “Living a Questionable Life”. He made his observations from Colossians 4:2-6. Please take a minute to refresh yourself on this wonderful word.
“Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful. And pray for us, too, that God may open a door for our message, so that we may proclaim the mystery of Christ, for which I am in chains. Pray that I may proclaim it clearly, as I should. Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity. Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.”
Frost asked his listeners if we were living questionable lives. Were our lives raising questions about Jesus, the Gospel and his Kingdom? Were people asking us these questions?
The passage easily divides into two parts.
First, pray for us.
- Pray that God would open a door for our message, the mystery of Christ.
- Pray that I may proclaim this message clearly and he confesses, “…as I should”.
Second, be careful how you act toward those outside the church.
- Make the most of every opportunity.
- Let your speech and manner of living be gracious, seasoned with the salt of the Jesus and his Kingdom, then you will know how to answer those who ask you questions about your life.
God spoke to me in several ways. I want to share a couple for your consideration. Here’s the meat of what I’m trying to say.
- The importance of prayer in sharing the mystery of Christ. This is a spiritual work. We cannot convict, convince or convert others. The Spirit must go before us, be with us and work through us to accomplish the Kingdom here and now. It’s not “method” but “movement”.
- If people are to ask me questions about the life of God in me, I would have to be WITH them. I have to dive into their world. I have to enter the brokenness and desperation of this generation. I have to be IN the world but not OF the world. I need to be one of the answers to Jesus’ prayer for the Father not to take me OUT of the world but protect me IN the world. I need to be with others. I must build redeeming relationships.
- The life I live in this context must be filled and controlled by the Holy Spirit. This life gives me a different set of values and different responses to everyday experiences. It causes others to respect me… but, question what I’m doing. My attitude and behavior invites their questions. This is when I continue our conversation about Jesus. I invite them to consider his person and his claims.
So, Frost raises the questions. What kind of life am I living and am I living my life with others. I’ve got problems on both fronts…but, confident God is always at his work and know he is at work in my life. Please pray for me.