From Our Partners at Upstream

Proclaiming Jesus

Gods plan "A" is you! There is no plan "B" he chose you to be the vessel for His spirit to reach the world with. 

This is why Jesus gave us this message; Matthew 5:13-16 “You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot. “You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden.Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.

Imagine what the world today would look like without leaders like Martin Luther King Jr., Amelia Earhart, Margaret Thatcher, Martin Luther, Harriet Tubman, and William Wilberforce.Imagine what the church would look like today without Paul, Phoebe, Priscilla, David, Esther or Peter… One thing that all of these leaders have in common is that they were Proclaimers!Each one took a stand and boldly stepped into what they were put on earth to accomplish. Leaders that proclaim truth, stand for justice and follow God's lead, always leave their mark on history and leave the world better than they found it.

As a man who has served youth in some form or fashion for almost 20 years I’ve learned one thing for sure, our kids do not have enough role models proclaiming and living out the commands of the Bible.

One of the main reasons, apart from God's call alone, that me and my family have chosen to live a life Upstream, going against the flow of cultural norms is because of this very reason. We need to be the light unto this world and be the examples of following Christ and not just following the world, or worse, trying to do both. We must choose each day whom we will follow, "for you will either love one or hate the other" Matt. 6:24

While I pastored a church for 5 years my staff and I would survey our incoming and outgoing grades each year. There were always a few questions that were answered in a way that shocked me, the biggest being “who is a Christian role model to you? Who models the faith, proclaims truth, and lives a life that emulates the life Christ commanded of us”?

Aside from a few answers calling out their mom or dad or the generosity of a wealthy Christian, the answer was left blank more than 90% of the time. It was after seeing this year after year that I realized how important our choices were and how we had to choose to live life going against the flow.

Yes I am saved, yes Jesus loves me, yes I have the Holy Spirit dwelling in me, and yes I covet all the promises God has for me, yet what drives me each day as Christ has left me here on this earth awaiting glorification are Christ’s commands to love others as He loved me, to proclaim that loving  the Father with all your heart mind and soul and loving others as yourself are the 2 commands that cover all the other commands in whole, and to be reminded that whatever I do for the least of these I also do unto Christ.

Will you be a Proclaimer and go Upstream with me?

Matthew 5:16
Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.

-Joe Rigelsky (Founder of Upstream International)