These words are often attributed to St. Francis and used by many pastors and churches to promote the missional actions that communicate the gospel maybe even more than words could.
When we give a person shoes every spring we communicate the gospel. Every Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday we communicate God’s great love for humanity as we give out hot coffee and PB&J’s.
The gospel is communicated through actions and it is so vital the church continues to preach in ways that not simply tell the world how to live but rather show the world the best life is lived in Christ!
Yet, today many scholars have a hard time finding these words by St. Francis. Many believe that he actually never said them. We know for a fact that St. Francis preached and that he preached even to animals believing that even raccoons and deer needed to hear the word of God proclaimed!
This week we start a new summer sermon series based on the first book of the Bible, Genesis. We start with the first chapter which is, in fact, the creation story. A story where the gospel is first proclaimed as God SPEAKS things into being!
Through God’s very words new life is formed!
From the first chapter of Genesis, we learn the power and importance of words. So powerful to spring forth flowers from the ground and grow fish in the sea!
Today our words to have the power to create new life! Words that encourage help a friend get through the day. Words of reconciliation work towards healing. Words of affirmation assure someone of their direction and faith.
This week as we go about our lives possibly scripture is encouraging us to not simply preach through our actions but also through our words? What word might you share that can plant the seeds of new life? Who in your life needs a good word of hope and love?
May God empower each of us to be co-creators with God in continuing to bring about new life in our world today!