Keep on Swimming. . .

everyday life inside the fishbowl

Monday Meditations: They WILL Listen!

on March 10, 2014

ImageIf you are anything like me, evangelism is a daunting task at times. I often get nervous talking to people, I hate knocking on doors, and I even have a phone-phobia. It’s nerve-racking to go to people and tell them that the way they think and live is wrong, even if you’re giving them life-changing, life-giving truth!

I have become increasingly convicted about my lack of evangelistic efforts as of late. Now that I don’t work outside of the home anymore, I have almost no outside contacts in my community. In fact, other than church, I typically go out once a week to go grocery shopping; that’s it! I’ve even thought about trying to go to the same cashiers at my stores in order to try to develop a bit of a relationship, but the cashiers are either trained to move customers through super quickly or they speak to their baggers the whole time in another language!

It’s really easy for me to come up with excuses as to why I don’t evangelize:

  • I have no outside contacts, and I’ve tried to (kind of)
  • I gave to our church’s evangelism fund, so that counts, right?
  • I participated in our church’s evangelistic effort
  • I invited someone to church.
  • I evangelize my kids every day (true and necessary, but not a good excuse)
  • My main ministry is discipling and teaching the Christians in our church

See?? I’ve got a good list of excuses!

So, I was talking to a friend and decided I needed to do SOMETHING! She told me about our library in town, which has reading hours for the kids once a week.  She said she’s gone a couple times and has noticed that the same moms come each week and that they talk to each other. AHA! Here is an opportunity to meet women in my community (with whom I even have some similarities–little kiddos!), build relationships with them, and give them the Gospel.

As I was thinking about this, I still felt nervous. You may think I’m silly for being nervous, but I suppose that’s just me. Anyway, I was praying that the Lord would give me boldness. Once I get talking, I usually am fine. But I need the boldness to initiate conversations.

All of this to say, my husband’s sermon yesterday kept bringing tears to my eyes. He didn’t know any of my thoughts about this, yet he preached a message in which God began to answer my prayer for boldness!

Dave’s message sought to answer 2 questions from Acts: When did the early church meet? and  How did the early church evangelize people? In answering the second question, he brought us to Acts 28. Paul was under house arrest for giving the Gospel, and some Jewish leaders came to ask questions and here what he had to say. Some were convinced, but others did not believe, and Paul reminded them what the prophet Isaiah said of the Jews who would hear but not listen to the truth. Paul concludes his speech to them with this gloriously encouraging, emboldening verse:

Therefore let it be known to you that this salvation of God has been sent to the Gentiles; they will listen (Acts 28:28).

When we give the Gospel to people, they will listen!! Does that not encourage your heart? I know that encouraged my weak heart. Every time Dave said “They will listen,” I teared up. What does Paul do after that? He proclaimed Christ “with all boldness” (v 31).

Of course, we don’t know who all will listen. Clearly not everyone listens. But some will listen! And this is why Christ is patiently delaying his coming. People are still listening! God is still saving people. And I can have the privilege of being a part of that. As I am faithful to proclaim the Gospel, they will listen!

Would you pray with me that God would give me (and you) boldness? Pray that God would allow me to build a relationship with even just one woman I meet at the library this spring and summer. Pray that I would give the Gospel, that she would listen, and that the Gospel would save her!

***Quick update: I just found a great resource for iPhone users! My favorite Gospel tract is “Two Ways to Live” by Matthias Media. They have a FREE app for the tract. You can read about it here. I just downloaded it and am super-excited!

{On Mondays, I share some thoughts from my pastor’s (husband’s) sermon on Sunday. This will be good for me, as it will help cement God’s truths in my head and heart. I hope these truths will encourage and challenge you! If you’re interested in hearing a particular sermon, you can head here to listen.}

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