How to Catch the Bus
Let me first make sure we have all the facts straight. A bus is a very large piece of equipment used for transportation. Typically they are shaped like giant rectangles and painted bold bright colors. If you see a bus then you probably recognize that is in fact a bus.
In college, kids used to tell the professors all the time that they were late because they “missed the bus.” How does this occur? How does one miss a bus? It is a huge mammoth with bright colors that nothing else on the road looks like. It can’t be missed! What the student was really saying was that they were late to the bus stop and the bus had already left. I drove these buses for the school for over a year and I can’t remember a single time when I was late in my route. I would sit at each stop for more than the allotted time and get the students to their destination on time. The traffic wasn’t that bad so the bus routes ran fairly smoothly. It just sounds better to say “I missed the bus” than “I overslept.”
When it comes to having a public witness for the Gospel, people often say, “I missed the bus.” I think in this case it’s because we either don’t know what a bus looks like or we just watched the bus go by. Here is what Scripture says of this:
Colossians 4:5-6 (NLT) Live wisely among those who are not believers, and make the most of every opportunity. Let your conversation be gracious and attractive so that you will have the right response for everyone.
To me, this is the checklist on how to catch the bus for living with Gospel intentionality. The apostle Paul says that step one is living wisely among non-believers. What does this mean? Doesn’t it mean displaying to these people the attributes of the Holy Spirit that Christ has given us through salvation. This means that people will know us by our love for our families, our friends and for them. People will know us by our faith and our hope. People will know us by our kindness towards them in spite of their lack of kindness and our gentleness in spite of their aggression. People will know us by the way we are under control with our speech, with our actions, with our choices. This is the image we show when we live by the Spirit. Non-believers all around us, at our workplaces, at our favorites food joints, at the ball fields will see that we are different and will question the reason.
That’s when the bus pulls up! When you live for Christ and prayerfully ask for opportunities then you will see opportunities often. You will begin to notice these mammoth, brightly colored, flashing light opportunities to share. This is where we must not miss the bus. Paul says, “Make the most of every opportunity.” We may not get these conversations daily, but we must take them when they are granted. Seize these moments and don’t be afraid of them. This is the reason that God has placed you where He has placed you. We are here for the sake of the Gospel. If God did not desire this then wouldn’t He just call us home, wouldn’t He have left out the Great Commission. It is His great desire that we would join Him in sharing the Good News of salvation and He will make the buses pull up.
Paul closes this thought with how to step on the bus. “Let your conversation be gracious and attractive.” Fill your mouthes with grace and mercy and love and faith, these will break the heart of stone. The KJV says to let your speech be seasoned with salt. Share the beautiful news of the sacrifice of Jesus in a way that is gracious and better tasting. The Gospel is filled with grace so our distribution of it must also be filled with grace.
Show people a life full of grace, share with them the story of grace, and let your speech be filled with grace. Catch the bus!