Evangelism: I Blew It
I am an introvert. It has taken years for me to overcome my fear of talking to new people. With this military life, the loneliness outweighed my lack of self-confidence and with practice I became much better at approaching new people (at least in a controlled environment, like church or Bible study or mom groups).
Evangelism is not my spiritual gift. (Mercy followed closely by teaching is my gift, in case you were curious) Even though I will occasionally chit chat with others while waiting in lines (which used to be one of my worst nightmares), I still have such difficulty slipping in the gospel. I have been so convicted of this recently and have been trying to prepare myself for opportunities.
Last night I had another reminder (via Podcast) on the importance of sharing our faith. That is our whole purpose in life: To bring glory to God by knowing Him and making Him known. I thought about my go do list today- DMV and Walmart. This gave me opportunities to talk to people in line, the DMV representative, and my Walmart cashier at the very least. I prayed for courage and ready words.
And I blew it. I spoke to several people in line (my boys made them smile and laugh) but just couldn’t figure out how to introduce Jesus to the conversation. I didn’t even throw in a “God has greatly blessed us” when the inevitable “All boys?” comments were made. Then it was my turn at the window. There was a long line behind me and I let that intimidate me into only asking the representative if she was doing ok with the busy day instead of specifically asking if I could pray for her. When we left Walmart, littlest mister was screaming (the kind you hear from all corners of the store) so I rushed out as quickly as possible. I blew it. I let fear and pride control me instead of bowing under the control of the Spirit.
Why is Evangelism so hard? Eternity far outweighs any discomfort I might feel. Why do I feel discomfort at all? I KNOW God is good and gracious and faithful and that has been continually proven in my life. Why wouldn’t I want to share that with every person I encounter?
I am ashamed of myself and I am praying for greater courage. I plan to ask for some more of these magnets or even just business cards at church on Sunday to icarry around. All it takes is a simple “Do you have a church to attend on Sunday? Would you like to visit mine?” and hand them the card. All it takes is an invitation. For all I know the people I will encounter may already have a church home and praise the Lord for that! Or they may be asking God for just one more sign that He is real and I could be their answer to prayer to get them through those church doors. Or they could completely blow me off, but that memory of the invitation will be stored away and maybe will bloom and blossom as the Spirit softens their heart. The Lord has said, “So shall my word be that goes out from my mouth; it shall not return to me empty, but it shall accomplish that which I purpose, and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it. “ (Isaiah 55:11) This is His work and He just allows me the opportunity to join Him. What an honor and I am allowing it to pass me by.
How do you practice everyday Evangelism? Do you have any resources for growing in this much needed discipline?