Jesus went out to the lake with His disciples, and a large crowd followed Him. They came from all over Galilee, Judea, Jerusalem, Idumea, from east of the Jordan River, and even from as far north as Tyre and Sidon. The news about His miracles had spread far and wide, and vast numbers of people came to see Him. Mark 3:7-8
When Jesus began His ministry on earth, it did not take long for news about Him to spread all around Israel. Mark 3 tells us that before long, news about His ministry spread everywhere, and a large number of people came to Him. Spend a few moments looking at Mark 3:7-8. Why do you think Jesus attracted so many people during His earthly ministry? People flocked to Jesus because He took care of their physical needs. He performed miracles. He healed people of sicknesses and diseases. He also restored people who had been possessed by demons. By caring for their physical needs, Jesus showed them His love for them and made them curious about Him.
Just as caring for physical needs was an effective way to reach people in Jesus' day, helping care for the physical needs of others is one way we can minister to those who are lost today. Yes, it will look different than it did when Jesus met people's physical needs, but there are certainly ways we can help meet the physical needs of others today. We can take someone a meal. We can offer to babysit so that a new parent can get a few hours of uninterrupted sleep. If someone is overwhelmed with housework or yard work, we can offer to help them get it accomplished more quickly. As we do these things, we will show these people a visible reminder of God's love for them. At some point, while you are helping meet the physical needs of your lost friend or family member, you can say, "I'm doing this because I love you. Even more than that, God loves you, and I wanted to remind you of just how much He loves and cares for you today." If the opportunity arises, you may even have a chance to have a spiritual conversation about God with that person that could impact their eternity.
Do you have your list of five people in your life who do not know Christ? If not, make that list now. Spend some time looking at your list. Pick one person on your list who has a physical need you can help meet. Take someone a meal who is sick or has a sick family member. If you know a parent who could use a few hours to run errands, offer to babysit. If you know that someone on your list has been lonely, invite them to coffee or dinner. Whatever you decide, as you meet these physical needs, remind your lost friend or family member just how much God loves them. If the opportunity arises, share the Bridge Diagram with them too!
Read Mark 3:7-19 (NLT)
Jesus went out to the lake with his disciples, and a large crowd followed him. They came from all over Galilee, Judea, Jerusalem, Idumea, from east of the Jordan River, and even from as far north as Tyre and Sidon. The news about his miracles had spread far and wide, and vast numbers of people came to see him.
Jesus instructed his disciples to have a boat ready so the crowd would not crush him. He had healed many people that day, so all the sick people eagerly pushed forward to touch him. And whenever those possessed by evil spirits caught sight of him, the spirits would throw them to the ground in front of him shrieking, “You are the Son of God!” But Jesus sternly commanded the spirits not to reveal who he was.
Afterward Jesus went up on a mountain and called out the ones he wanted to go with him. And they came to him. Then he appointed twelve of them and called them his apostles. They were to accompany him, and he would send them out to preach, giving them authority to cast out demons. These are the twelve he chose:
Simon (whom he named Peter),
James and John (the sons of Zebedee, but Jesus nicknamed them “Sons of Thunder”),
James (son of Alphaeus),
Simon (the zealot),
Judas Iscariot (who later betrayed him).