One generation shall laud your works to another and shall declare your mighty acts. —Psalm 145:4
Since we’ve been worshiping from home, I’ve been in the Redeemer sanctuary only a handful of times. Each time I walk through those glass doors, I can’t help but laugh. Maybe you remember the banner set up right by the Welcome Table. It says, “Be Contagious.” The irony, right?
But today’s passage reminds me of why those words really are so important, despite how currently inappropriate they sound. This pandemic has certainly drilled home our capacity to spread what is bad. Yet this Psalm reminds us of our capacity to spread the ultimate good, infinitely and exponentially. The Psalmist marvels at what happens over time, over generations even, when people sing God’s praises. When one generation “lauds [God’s] works,” the next generation gets to catch the good news too, and they can pass it on to the next generation, and so forth. The world is changed.
And the reality is, we are direct beneficiaries of people’s commitment to share the good news of Jesus. My guess is you met Jesus because someone introduced you to him, or helped you get to know him better. Maybe it was a parent or a friend or someone else. Who helped you make Jesus’ acquaintance? Who helped you to understand who he is and what he did for you? Who helped you clear out your misconceptions so you could really nurture that relationship? People have been doing that for a long time and it’s why you get to know Jesus now. When we’re generous with the news we’ve received, we have the capacity to influence and impact generations to come, as well.
Sometimes Jesus’ call to share the Good News can be intimidating. If it feels that way to you, be encouraged by the Psalm. Each new generation came to know God because the ones before them couldn’t help but talk about how great he is. It really can be that simple. When you talk about what Jesus has done for you, about Jesus’ deep and unswerving love for you, about how following Jesus changed your life—and when you share those things with authentic love—it’s a pure blessing to those who get to hear it. You’re making an introduction, you’re nurturing a new relationship, you’re making sure future generations get to know how great God is, too.
A few years ago our Faith in Action t-shirts featured a picture of a dandelion with its seeds (are they called seeds?) blowing away in the wind. The implication is ongoing, far-reaching impact. That’s the kind of impact we’re talking about here, but bigger. How might you change the world simply by singing God’s praises today?