Its something I wasn’t mentally prepared for.
I had one hundred or so youth leaders in a conference room in Indianapolis just a few days ago at the Group and Simply Youth Ministry sponsored National Youth Worker’s Conference. We had just spent a day together talking about equipping their teens to share Jesus with confidence and clarity. But then something happened that I wasn’t ready for.
Let me explain.
After training these eager youth leaders that if they were going to get their kids to share their faith that they had to lead the way themselves, I gave them a “class project.” Each of them took a pen and a piece of paper and began to write a personal letter to that one person whom they know who desperately needs an encounter with Jesus. After ten minutes or so of writing I had them stop. I explained to them that this letter represents that conversation that they needed to have with that person in the next 48 hours. They could finish the letter after class and send it in the mail (after all who sends real letters any more? Getting a letter is something rare and special!) Or they could put that half finished letter in their back pocket and pick up their cell phone and either share with them right over the phone or set up a meeting with them in the next few days.
Those half finished letters in their hands represented unfinished conversations that needed to be completed. Some represented conversations that needed to be started.
After everyone understood what these letters represented I asked who would like to read what they had written. The first letter went something like, “Dear Joe, I know we talk alot about all sorts of stuff. We talk about football, basketball and baseball. But there’s one thing I’ve failed to bring up to you. The most important thing. His name is Jesus Christ.” With these words this youth leader’s booming voice cracked and he began to cry…as did we all.
Youth leaders began to share and all of us continued to shed tears. We all fell apart when one lady started her letter with the words, “Dear Daddy….” I don’t even remember what she wrote. All I remember is the heart broken yet hopeful way she said the word “Daddy” left me a mess.
We all left the room that day motivated, moved and ready to share the good news with that one person…ready to finish and send that unfinished letter.
Who do you need to send a letter to? Is it your friend, your classmate, your co-worker or maybe even your daddy? Whoever it is I want to challenge you to sit down with pen and paper and write that letter that explains the good news of Jesus to that special person. Pour out your heart through that pen onto that paper. Let them know how much you long for them to know Jesus and the hope that you have found in him.
Believe me, it’s the best Valentine’s gift you could ever send.
After your finished I’d love to hear all or part of it. Would you dare to share that letter with us all? Maybe just even share the first part of your letter with us online so that we can pray with you and for that person as that letter is sent out. Leave all or part of that letter as a comment below.
It’s time to finish that letter.