It wasn’t a story I was planning on sharing. It wasn’t a moment I was too proud of. In fact, the thought that I admitted it out loud makes me want to cower in shame. And yet my mouth was open and I couldn’t stop. It was unplanned confession in the middle of my sermon. I stopped looking at my notes and looked into the group of people sitting in front of me.
You see, a couple months ago, I found myself on a plane flying home for my Grandma’s funeral. On one of my flights from Minneapolis to Bismarck, I was next to a lady who asked me what I was reading. I was reading Five Dysfunctions of a Team. It is a business book, so I guess it makes sense when she asked if I was a business major. I told her no, that I was reading this for one of my ministry classes because I am a Youth and Family ministry major, on track to become a youth pastor. And you should have seen her face. It had an expression that said, “Great. I am sitting next to one of those people.” There was a pregnant pause in the conversation as she didn’t really know what to say next. I asked her about her work and we landed safely, parted ways, and I was picked up by my best guy friend and she was on to work starting a JoAnn fabric store.
On my flight back to school, I was sitting next to a young woman who was in the army. She asked what I was reading. It was the same book. She asked if I was a business major. I remembered the response I got from the other lady and didn’t want to explain about how I’m going to be a youth pastor, so I said yes.
I said yes. I lied and said I was a business major.
And I am ashamed. Paul writes that he is not ashamed of the Gospel.
I am in London, with one of our main tasks to do street witnessing and evangelism. And yet the very idea of street witnessing scares me. I do love that I am going to be a youth pastor, so why do I shy away from sharing the truth about the very one who saved my life?
When we got here and during the first Saturday seminar, I was sitting next to a lady who after hearing about how five young adults flew to London for the summer to serve God, complimented us on our boldness.
In that moment on the plane, I can tell you I didn’t have boldness.
And so I have a prayer for boldness. Boldness to share the very truth that saved my life.