Pass the Baton

Anne Dyer, Volunteer Writer, South Barrington | January 5, 2024

How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? And how can anyone preach unless they are sent? As it is written: “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!”

But not all the Israelites accepted the good news. For Isaiah says, “Lord, who has believed our message? 
Romans 10:14-16 NIV

Have you ever participated in a relay race? One team member carries the baton for a marked distance, then hands it over to the next person who grabs it and runs their distance, then hands it to the next person and so on and so on. The goal is to make it to the finish line, hopefully as the first team! I enjoy relay races mostly because of the team aspect—a group of people working together for the same cause.

If you have accepted Jesus Christ and decided to follow Him, you likely have felt a burning desire to tell everyone you know. Maybe, like me, you wanted to shout it from a mountaintop! However, the audience isn’t always a receptive one, right?  When I first accepted Jesus, I was in my late 20’s. Oh, I had grown up attending religious classes and church, but this was quite different. With the kindly assistance of my small group leaders and members, I came face to face with the fact that I had to make a decision—to live with Jesus or live on my own. Thankfully, I chose to live with Jesus and I’ve never regretted it. 

In my zeal to share my newfound faith with others I cared deeply about, I quickly learned that not everyone felt the same as I did. Some were skeptical, cautious, and others even excluded me at times. I’d be lying if I said it didn’t hurt me, but with good counsel around me, I was able to pick myself up, dust myself off, and lean on the Lord during those painful times. Our Lord desires for us to join Him in sharing the good news with others.

I have been told that for many people, they need to hear the gospel seven times before they make a decision to accept Christ. Knowing this has encouraged me. It’s like a relay race, you just don’t know which leg of the race you’re on. I feel it a privilege to share my faith with others while realizing they may be hearing the gospel the first, second , or even seventh time.  Let’s ask ourselves if we are passing the baton. Maybe one day, we’ll pass to someone ready to cross the finish line. What a celebration that will be!

Next Steps

  • Have you asked Jesus to be the Lord of your life? If not, consider joining a small group like Rooted. This is a space to learn and share your faith journey with others. 
  • Consider reading the book Hinds Feet on High Places by Hannah Hurnard. It is a relatable book that is rich with imagery.