I've been thinking a lot lately about evangelism.
How do I share the Gospel? How do I tell other people this great news? How should I respond when questioned about my faith? How do I describe this great hope within me?
& what's even the point?
This week alone I've had three separate conversations with people about what I believe, and why I believe it. I realized after I stumbled through these surprise interactions how unprepared I am to share the Gospel.
However, I think that God, in His sovereignty, orchestrated these similar conversations so closely to one another to teach me something very important.
"When they deliver you over, do not be anxious how you are to speak or what you are to say, for what you are to say will be given to you in that hour." - Matthew 10:19
When it comes to explaining to an unbeliever the reason for the hope that is within me, I need to depend on my merciful Savior to give me the words the moment I need them. God reminded me that there is absolutely nothing I can do to change someone's heart. No amount of arguing, pleading, preaching, or eloquent language is ever going to convince someone. Only God, by His grace, can choose to use my feeble words and childish efforts to do something incredible - open a sinner's heart to see the light.
It does not, therefore, depend on human desire or effort, but on God’s mercy.
I need to be at peace when these situations come up, and not panic as I'm scrambling for the right words to convince someone that what I'm saying is true! I need to remember that God is so much bigger than I give Him credit for! He's got it under control, and I need only to be faithful.
Speak with words full of grace. Possess a spirit of gentleness. Be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to anger. Refuse to apologize for what God calls sin. Be bold, discerning, and loving. Be salt, light, and a city on a hill.
I'm going to strive more after these qualities and trust that God's Word will never turn void. I might be rejected by man, but I will never be rejected by Him. I need not fret when my words are not believed, or if they're scoffed at - because I don't know what God's working behind the scenes. My words might be planting seeds that won't produce fruit for weeks, months, years, or even a lifetime.
I take comfort that my God is bigger, stronger, higher, and greater than any other, and He has it under control.
What do you say to someone when they say, "I don't believe in God, and I'm not going to think you're crazy for believing in Him. But I just don't, and I'm happy that way."? How can we show people like this that the Gospel is so much more than a personal religious preference?
Let me know your thoughts in the comment section below!