Know It. To have a cognitive understanding of it. To know the facts, the basics. To be able to comprehend it and understand how it applies to real life. To be aware of through observation, inquiry or information. Head knowledge.
Own It. To admit or acknowledge that something is the case or that one feels a certain way. To accept. To agree or confess. To claim as one's own. To believe it not only with the head, but with the heart.
Share It. To give it to others. To tell someone about it. To be so passionate about it, that you can't help but pass it on to everyone you meet.
Know it, own it, share it. But what is the it?
These are the three phrases that came to mind this Fall as I was thinking about the Gospel, and my hopes for our students this year. Each of our students are at different places spiritually. Some are coming in with very little or no church background. Some have grown up in church their whole life. Some could quote memory verses to me, while others have never opened a Bible. Some have accepted Jesus as their Lord and Savior, others have not. Each of us is on a journey, and we are all at different spots.
For the majority of our students, my hope is that this Fall they will come to know the gospel. They will become familiar with the basics of the greatest story ever told. They will have a clear understanding and grasp of who God is, and that He wants a relationship with them. They will come to know that our sins separate us from him, and there is nothing we can do to fix that. Thankfully, Jesus paid the price for our sins by dying and rising again, and offers us the gift of eternal life. All we have to do is trust in Him alone!
For some of our students who have grown up in the church, and are maybe familiar with the gospel, my prayer for them is that they will come to own the gospel. So often students just adopt their parent's faith, which is good, but at some point they have to own it for themselves. Do they believe this or not? Is it true or no? As our students grow in spiritual maturity, I want to see them go beyond just knowing the gospel, to actually owning it.
And for a handful of our students, they are ready to be challenged to share the gospel. This good news is not meant to be kept to ourselves! We hope to give them practical tools, conversation starters, and experiences to build their confidence to share it with friends and family who might not know Jesus.
Each of our students are at different stages. It wouldn't make sense to encourage someone to share something they don't know. And they won't want to share something that they don't own or believe in fully. As they come to know it and own it, the passion and conviction to share it with others will follow! Please be praying for each of our students, as they come to know, own and share the gospel this year!
And what about you? Where would you put yourself as a parent? Do you need to familiarize yourself with the gospel? Come to know it? Do you need to take that next step and truly own it, live it, and believe it? If you know it and own it, are you sharing it? With your kids, your co-workers, family members, and friends? Jesus commands us to go and make disciples, to share Him with others. If you're not doing so, what's holding you back? I'm praying for you all as parents, too, as we walk this journey with Jesus!