“Is our Gospel really good news?”
This is the question that evangelist James Choung posed to JBU students when he spoke in chapel during Spiritual Renewal Week. Using this as a springboard, Choung launched into a speech in which he examined a question that our generation has been asking: what is good? Choung answered by declaring that this good news is most certainly the gospel. He drove his point home by showing his viral video entitled “The Big Story,” which has received more than 87,000 views on YouTube. Using simply a Sharpie and a piece of notebook paper, Choung diagrammed how our world was designed for good, damaged by evil, restored for the better, and that we are sent together to heal: the essential message of the gospel here-and-now. This was only the first of Choung’s powerful messages, which stirred students like myself to think more about evangelism.
For me, the most meaningful thing I learned from James Choung came during his talkback session Tuesday night. Since I often let my fear hinder my evangelism efforts, Choung’s statement that faith is the opposite of fear impacted me hugely. “What would you do if fear wasn’t in the equation?” he questioned. Along with this, Choung reminded us of the verse 1 John 4:18, which talks about how God casts out fear. He encouraged us to live our lives emboldened by courage and to have confidence that if something is of God, there will be no fear involved. Such a simple reminder, but one that can breed powerful results if we put it into action. Another one of Choung’s circular diagrams, which he called “The Discipleship Cycle,” illustrated this point: hear ~ respond ~ debrief. Through the words of James Choung, I was compelled to live a life of intentionality as I seek to bring others into the Kingdom of God.