Week 1: March 5

Gospel Fluency in My Life

by Sue Schreiner

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DAY 1 - What is Gospel Fluency?

I’m so glad you are joining us on this journey towards gospel fluency. Over the next 10 weeks we will unite as a community learning to speak fluid Jesus. You’ll want to keep your Bible and a notebook handy to jot down your thoughts and discoveries as we reflect together.

So what do we mean by Gospel Fluency? If someone asked you the question, “What is the gospel?”, what would your answer be? You might say it’s what is found in Matthew, Mark, Luke and John which is a great starting point. If they pressed for more, you might add it’s the life, death and resurrection of Jesus which saves us. But what if they asked, “how do you apply the gospel to your everyday life?” Gospel fluency happens when the desire to become more like Jesus is reflected in every part of our lives. Our relationships, conversations, and interaction with people change when we relate the way Jesus related to people. When the teachings of the gospel permeate the everyday parts of living our lives it changes our parenting, financial decisions, our work days until it influences our every thought.

When you were in school, did you study a foreign language? I took Spanish from 8th-12th grade and really felt as though I knew the language. The summer of my senior year I spent a week touring parts of Mexico and was hit with the shocking realization that I could not communicate in Spanish. I was translating everything I heard and then what I wanted to say, in my head first and it was a slow, awkward and frustrating process. I’d only used the language in the safety of my classroom where we concentrated on the language rules but not conversation. Because English was still the language of my thoughts, a meaningful conversation in Spanish was impossible. I realized I was NOT fluent in Spanish because I hadn’t totally immersed myself in it.

This can happen with the gospel for us as Christians. We know about Jesus and worship Him with our church family. We know the Sunday School answers that Jesus saved us from our sins and that the gospel is good news. But we don’t THINK in gospel and what it means to us. It answers so many questions for us. Who Jesus is? What is His character? How did He relate to people? What does He say to us today? We can see Him throughout the pages of scripture from Genesis to Revelation. Knowing Him reveals the love of God our Father to us. There is much to learn and it’s all good news – the gospel. Knowing the truth of the gospel is a great first step. But living out those truths on a daily basis means allowing the gospel to become the filter for the way we live our lives. The process begins when we surrender to the Holy Spirit leading us to become intentional about filtering our thoughts and actions through the teaching of the gospel.

Fluency in a language happens when you move from just translating the unfamiliar to the familiar, to interpreting life through that new language.

I believe this is what God wants His people to experience with the gospel. He wants them to be able to translate the world around them and the world inside of them through the lens of the gospel-the truths of God revealed in the person and work of Jesus. Gospel-fluent people think, feel, and perceive everything in light of what has been accomplished in the person and work of Jesus Christ. - “Gospel Fluency” Jeff Vanderstelt

But how do we accomplish such a huge sounding task. The same way we become fluent in a foreign language. We immerse ourselves in a community that speaks and practices the gospel. Together, we encourage one another to ‘speak Jesus’ in our joy and in our pain and sorrow. We fill our thoughts with who He is to us as we learn from His Word. We are honest about the things in our lives that don’t get filtered through the gospel and we soak in God’s truth.

Romans 12:2 (NIV) - Do not conform any longer to the patterns of this world but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.

The thrilling part of this journey is the fact that as we learn to see every bit of our lives through the life and work of Jesus for us and in us, we are being transformed into His image. Oh what a joy it is to become like Jesus so that we can reflect His love to a dark and pain filled world in all His glory.


With this definition of Gospel fluency in mind, name a person you’ve known who demonstrates it in their lives. What makes them different? What characteristics of Jesus do you notice about them?

Think about the last 24 hours, where did you clearly see the influence of the gospel in your life?

Day 2 - I believe. Help my Unbelief! 

As we embrace  Gospel Fluency, we find it involves knowing what the gospel says and believing it for our own lives. That sounds so simple but, if I’m honest, there are times the everyday struggles and battles of life hit me and my response is not at all gospel influenced.  Those negative tapes begin to play in my mind. “I will never measure up. I’m a failure. I’ll never get beyond this so why try?.” 

We all have a list of negative self-talk responses to life's struggles. When this happens, we stop speaking Jesus and go back to the old language and patterns we used in the past. We need to admit that there are things about Jesus and His work in us that we’re not believing in the moment. We all have those instances when we are unbelievers. When we recognize what is happening we can replace the untruth we are believing with truth we know about who God is and who He says we are in Him. 

Knowing these gospel truths  helps us in our battle of unbelief. Jesus is God’s perfect provision for us. He came that we might find freedom from sin and abundant life as God’s loved children. Life’s struggles can overwhelm us and may cause us to believe Jesus can do for others what we don’t really think He will do for us. That unbelief can lead to recurring negative thoughts about who we are in Christ and how He will respond to our need. Those are the times we need to be like the father asking Jesus for healing for his son.

Mark 9:23-24 - (Jesus said) “Everything is possible for him who believes.” Immediately the boy’s father exclaimed, “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief. 


Grab your notebook and list some of the areas where you engage in negative self talk. It may be financial, work, physical or relationship issues. Now list the recurring negative self-talk  that plays in your mind in these situations. (I gave you a few of mine earlier to get you started.) Finally, look at the following scriptures and make a list of the truths  you find that God wants you to know and believe. Meditating on these will help to renew your mind. 

John 1:12-13  - Yet to all who received Him, to those who believed in His name, He gave the right to become children of God…Born of God. 

2 Corinthians 5:17 - Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; The old has gone, the new has come!

Ephesians 2:8-10 - For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith-and this not from yourselves it is the gift of God-not by works so that no one can boast. For we are God’s workmanship (masterpiece) created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do. 

Colossians 1:21-23 - Once you were alienated from God and were enemies in your minds because of your evil behavior. But now He has reconciled you by Christ’s physical body through death to present you holy in His sight with out blemish and free from accusation-if you continue in your faith, established and firm, not moved from the hope held out in the gospel.

Day 3 - Community That Speaks and Practices the Gospel

One of the primary ways we can grow in Gospel Fluency is by immersing ourselves in a community that speaks and practices the gospel. Practicing the language of Gospel truth with others is a key part to internalizing it.

Grab your Bible and read Ephesians 4:11-16. Paul is describing how the body of Christ (the church) is built up to reach unity and maturity in the faith and knowledge of Christ. 4:15 says …speaking the truth in love, we will in all things grow up into Him who is the Head, that is, Christ. As we speak to one another using the truths we learn from the gospel of Christ, we encourage and help one another to mature in Him, becoming more fluent.

The greatest gift we have to offer to others is the love and forgiveness of Christ that we’ve experienced. When someone is hurting, confused, or experiencing life problems, we can offer Jesus with all His compassion, strength, wisdom, and power through the Holy Spirit. When encouraging someone, it’s important to remind them of gospel truth and help them discover or remember how we can know that truth. For example: simple truth - Jesus loves you. How can you know that: He was willing to die on the cross for you just as you are. Communicating God’s love and His promises requires that we don’t just read them but soak in them, experience them, understand them and know why we believe them to be true.

When we share life with others who embrace the Gospel of Jesus and we share our experiences we can all grow and mature in our faith. I love discovering new truths about Jesus with people who are digging into His Word. It isn’t about gaining knowledge but about deepening our relationship with Jesus as we get to know Him more clearly. We learn how easy it is to see Him in every aspect of our lives and then become His witness as we share life with others.

Imagine sitting with someone who is going through a deep life struggle, stuck in a place where all they can see is the enormity of the pain, anxiety or anger that is consuming them. How might you respond to offer them hope and help them see the heart of God for them? When Paul said we should “speak the truth in love”, he was talking about us sharing the truth we know about Jesus. That is what forms the life raft of hope we hold out to others drowning in hopelessness.

When we spend time meditating on the truths of the gospel in our own lives on a daily basis and sharing those reflections with one another, the gospel comes alive for us. We practice seeing our lives through the filter of the gospel and begin to see God’s blessings everywhere. Those blessings are so sweet, we want to tell others about them and our gospel fluency increases.


Read Ephesians 1:1-14 and make a list of the Spiritual Blessings Christ offers you in these verses, writing them in your own words. Think about what each one means to you. Use your list to pray a prayer of gratitude. Share your thoughts with someone in your faith community by telling them about the blessing that spoke most deeply to your heart.

Day 4 - God’s Truth Revealed

Today we’ll use an exercise to practice seeing our lives through the filter of the Gospel. Below you’ll find a list of 10 truths about God found in His Word. There are hundreds more but let’s start here. You’ll need your notebook and you might want to keep your Bible handy.

First, quiet your mind and focus on God’s loving presence with you. Now make two columns on your page. Read through the list below and choose at least 3 of these truths about God that you have experienced at some specific time or event in your life. List them in column one. Next, take some time to look at each one and remember what was going on, how you felt, and what experiencing God in that way meant to you. Use column 2 to make notes from your reflections.

Now talk to God about each of them, thanking Him for who He is to you and for His care for you not just at that time but every moment of your life.

The scripture references on this list are each just some of the many that support each of these truths. You can use a concordance or a Bible app to find many more. YouVersion or Bible Gateway are great resources for you. Combining the knowledge of truth about God with the way it intersects in your life gives you a way to clearly share the gospel with others.

10 Truths about God

1. God is always good. — Psalm 119:68 “You are good and do good. Teach me your statutes.”

2. God is always with me — Joshua 1:9 “This is my command-be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”

3. God is faithful — Hebrews 10:23 “Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful.”

4. God designed me for a purpose. — Ephesians 2:10 “For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.”

5. God loves me deeply, no matter what. — Romans 8:38-39 “For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

6. God will fill me to overflowing with hope. — Romans 15:13 “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.”

7. God will strengthen and help me. — Isaiah 41:10 “So do not fear, for I am with you, do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”

8. God promises me an abundant life. — John 10:10 “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.”

9. God has a plan for my life. — Jeremiah 29:11 “For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.”

10. God can be trusted. — Hebrews 10:23 “Let us hold tightly without wavering to the hope we affirm, for God can be trusted to keep his promise.”