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The Answer of all answers.

After my last testimony of searching for Jesus at a local church's men's breakfast I had a conversation with someone I dearly love about the difference between searching for Jesus and sharing Jesus.

As we texted they sent me this...

"I never thought of going someplace I didn't want to go and searching for Jesus. I mean I shared Him with people and I look for opportunities to share Him. Is that the same thing?"

It's a good question. I don't claim to have all the answers... just the answers that make sense to me. I wrestle with my questions before the Lord, and He gives me answers that bring me peace. I hope you do the same.

So here is the story of how I came to the Answer of all answers, Who also gave me peace about whether searching and sharing are the same, and how to tell it's time for one or the other.

At first, my answer to this question was initially both 'yes' and 'no.' Truly there are similarities and differences between going to search for Jesus and going to share Jesus...

Yes, it is the same thing.

Sharing Jesus with others is a powerful, supernatural function of the Holy Spirit AND so is being able to recognize the genuine Spirit of Jesus at work in others. It takes the Spirit of Christ in me to search for and pick up on the Spirit of Christ in others. Some of the most heavenly memories I have of desiring to share Jesus with others came moments after I prayed, 'Lord, I know I carry Your Presence here. I release Your Spirit now into this place. Show me who is hungry for You.' Like Noah, opening the ark and sending out the dove to search for land, I too asked the dove of the Holy Spirit to search the area where I was at and show me the good soil of hearts that were favorable to Him. I have prayed this in my work place and was shocked when He would answer! Once, my eyes were suddenly opened to christians driving onto post through my traffic lane. The same day, saints were strangely emboldened to 'bless' me as I greeted them, checked their identification and sent them happily on their way. Other times, broken, hurting people have asked me to pray with them. I've seen people weep and believe to receive Christ, in front of security cameras, in front of other employees, in front of all of God's creation. As I searched He brought about situations where I had no choice but to share Christ with others.

So, yes, in this sense, sharing Christ with others is the same as searching for Him in others because they work hand in hand. We plant the seeds of the gospel in the soil of people's hearts and when we pray for God to show us who is hungry for Him, He arranges the meetings between the searcher and the hungry so we can share.

No, it is not the same thing.

When I was searching for Jesus at the men's gathering I was also dealing with my own bad attitude about not wanting to be where I was. Leading up to it anyway. It wasn't a huge struggle, just an attitude check. So my goal, my prayer, was to look at every person with eyes that are hunting for Jesus in them, in their lives. Did I share with any of the men that day little pieces of the story of Jesus' own work in me? Absolutely. The testimony of Jesus is the very essence and Spirit of prophecy. To tell others what He is doing in me opens the door for Him to do it again in others. Now, was that my reason for going to the breakfast? To share Christ with others? No. The reason I went was to connect with other men of God and listen to what Jesus was doing in them... that day. I love history. Especially the stories of great revivals and moves of the Holy Spirit in the past. I will listen to dusty, old, repeated testimonies from decades ago, even from people who didn't experience what the Lord was doing first hand, and I wouldn't dare disrespect His work in my elders, but I would much rather listen to what God is doing now, today, in our time. So, no, sharing Jesus with others is not the same thing as searching for Him in others mainly because for me, sharing means I am talking and you are listening. Searching means you are talking and I am listening.

There is also a difference I can see between going to search or going to share and it is in the area of giving and receiving.

If I go to search for Jesus... I am reaching to receive more of Jesus through others. I know that if they share their testimony of Christ with me, He brings us all life. I am asking Jesus to reveal Himself because I need a touch from Him that other like-minded believers should be willing to share. (And as I have stated, I love history. These stories are history.) As I search, I find, as Jesus promised, and He comes and fills us all with more abundant life!

If I go to share Jesus... I know I am empowered to represent Him. I am asking Him to reveal those who hunger and thirst for righteousness because I bear His Presence for that specific purpose... to give Jesus away. As I share, Jesus is there among us, He comes and fills us with abundant life!

So what is my answer?

Searching for Jesus may not be the same as sharing Jesus. However, both paths begin with the supernatural power of the Holy Spirit and will lead both sharer and searcher to Jesus. It's not as if one path in this case is better than another. What matters is, how is the Holy Spirit of Jesus Christ leading you in the moment, in accordance with His Word, the Bible, and how faithful we are to obey His still, small, voice?

Jesus is our Answer.

He is not only King of all kings and Lord of all lords...

...Jesus is the Answer of all answers.

He is the best mystery we could ever search for.

He is the most priceless treasure we could ever share.

Love, your fellow searcher and sharer,

Pastor David Tanner

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