FROM THE HEART OF THE GOSPEL
Be “Frank” with the Message
Our missionary style must always carry with it the heart of Christ’s message. Secondary aspects to the Gospel can become primary in the hearer’s ears if we don’t include the primary message of Christ’s love and mercy.
When sharing the Gospel message we can confuse others if we pick and choose particular doctrines and lift them from the context of the complete story of salvation history. Our message becomes a “disjointed transmission” rather than an attractive story to join. The problem is that many have lost their story, a message that I have said for over thirty years. Coming to a life transforming understanding of the gospel will not generally happen in “disjointed” statements that have been separated from the full picture of God’s family plan.
The axiom is true when it comes to sharing Christ with others, “less is more” or we could say, “simple is more.” The doorway to the secondary issues of the Gospel message is the primary message of mercy, which all people need to understand. One of the takeaways for me that I think is a very important point is that when it comes to the hierarchy of truths, we should not rank the truths “against” each other but “with” each other. Pope Francis says, “Each truth is better understood when related to the harmonious totality of the Christian message; in this context all of the truths are important and illumine one another.”
When it comes to communicating the Gospel message, I love what the Holy Father says, it’s important to give “direct expression to the heart of the Gospel.” As you talk to people about the message of Christ, pause and ask yourself, “What does this person need to hear from the heart of the gospel? How can I convey the message in a simple, understandable way? Am I insistently imposing my favorite doctrines in the conversation at the price of them not hearing the heart of the Gospel? Am I willing to diminish what I think is important and accept what they need to hear?”
Commit yourself to learn the story of salvation history, the Bible. Don’t learn bits and pieces of either the Catechism or the Bible, learn them as a whole: understand the big picture of each and really understand the heart of the message, Christ’s life changing mercy!
Remember this document and remember when sharing Christ, be “Frank.”
Jeff Cavins is the creator of the Great Adventure Bible Study series and Director of
Jeff is the founding host of the EWTN program Life on the Rock and Relevant Radio’s Morning Air. He is author of several books, including the best-selling My Life on the Rock: A Rebel Returns to the Catholic Faith and I’m Not Being Fed: The Food That Satisfies the Soul. He is also co-editor of the Amazing Grace series. His newest book, Walking with God: A Journey Through the Bible, co-authored with Dr. Tim Gray, provides an insightful overview of the Bible.