Saturday, August 22, 2009



In studying the four Gospels, I have been making a spreadsheet of every person or group mentioned that knew Jesus, and categorizing them simply by whether they liked Jesus or not as measured by 1.) Whether they were drawn to him in some, and 2.) Whether they gave him a hearing. At least 95% of people who met Jesus responded positively to him or liked him.

Statistically, it is probable that any person will be liked by 68% of the people they meet. So what made Jesus as a human being more liked, his message more heard, and his influence more impacting than the average person? Come to St. Patrick's the next two Sundays to find out.

As we prepare to go back to school, back to work after summer vacations, and as our church seeks to establish itself as a significant part of our community, I would like to share 12 attributes of the life of Jesus that caused people to like him. As his followers, if we can increase our LIKEABILITY we can increase our impact on the world. Just look at how media tries to minimize Christianity--by trying to make people not like us!!!!!

As we see in most political elections, LIKEABILITY is the door that gives people an opportunity for the world around us to listen to what we have to say, and possibly even support us. In the past election cycle people liked President Obama and Sara Palin and this increased their influence. When a person or a group of people listen to us, we can begin to have an influence that effects the world for the good in positive ways.

This is the first time in 17 years of preaching I have studied the likeability of Jesus, and the correlation it has to the effectiveness and significance of his ministry. There is nothing wrong with people liking us unless we become driven for the approval of people and are willing to compromise our core conviction about life to be liked. In fact, if less than 68% of people do not like you, that could be a problem as a Christian seeking to have a positive influence for Christ on the world.

There are many right things about learning to be a likeable person. Even people who do not agree with your ideals or message might like you and support your cause! Mother Teresa's impact on the world at large was not only on Catholics or Christians! Why? Many people liked and respected her positive impact on the world even when they disagreed with her religious convictions that motivated her service.

This sermon mini-series will be a fresh and life giving two weeks of practical steps you can take increase your likeability, and in turn your effectiveness at influencing others.

Rev. Fr. Kevin BakerPastor, St. Patrick's Church (CEC)
We should not grow weary of doing little things for the love of God,who considers not the greatness of the work,but the love with which it is performed.Brother Lawrence--4th ConversationThe Practice of the Presence

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