40 Days of Good News
I have found that it is often in the midst of ministry encounters that Scripture takes on fresh and deeper significance for me. My trip to the Jungle camp in Calais last month brought Luke 4:18&19 vividly into focus,
“The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to release the oppressed, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favour.”
This passage is known as Jesus’ manifesto and so if we are his followers, then it is our manifesto too. The desire to participate in God’s mission is not just an issue of personal discipleship, it is also a central feature of all parts of Baptist Together; be that Churches, Associations, Specialist Teams or Colleges. We are a missional movement. This passion has inspired our Regional Team Leaders to commit themselves and encourage others to be part of a particular focus on mission through 40 Days of Good News from 6 April to Pentecost Sunday on 15 May. There is a short video about 40 Days of Good News on our website along with information about how some of our associations are engaging with this mission focus. Remember that about 94% of the UK population don’t yet know and follow Jesus – and we are called to make disciples! So be encouraged to persevere in the mission you are already engaged in, or try some new approaches in these 40 Days and just get out there with your love and your spiritual gifts and do something!
As well as always looking for ways to witness to Christ ourselves, I would like to invite you to join me in focussing our prayers on mission during 40 Days of Good News. Please also encourage your church community to be praying as well; in small groups, prayer gatherings, children’s and youth groups, leadership team meetings and in worship services. We know that our efforts alone will not see lives and communities transformed; we need God’s Spirit to be at work amongst us and in our communities so that people can encounter Jesus and receive the new life he offers.