Did you know Jesus said, if you are His follower, you would be His witness?
Acts 1:8 NIV
“But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”
He said, you will BE MY WITNESSES! Isn’t this exciting? Or is it making your knees shake? Maybe you just got an image in your mind of people coming to your door putting a damnation track in your hand, or interrupting your beach party to tell you about Jesus. Maybe you envisioned traveling to Africa, contracting Malaria and losing your life in a jungle somewhere. But maybe Jesus just wants you to love the neighbor he moved next door to you. Or maybe he wants to bless you as you go to a foreign country and realize that all your American dream effort has been a lie and materialism is ravaging you and sinking you in deeper and deeper debt.
“How, then, can they call on the one in whom they have not believed? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard?”
My kids always ask me about the person across the ocean that has never ever heard the name of Jesus. “Will they go to heaven?” God is a gentleman, and doesn’t force Himself on anyone, but what about those who haven’t heard? What are we doing to reach the unreached? What are our churches doing? Did you ever hear the statistic that 99.9% of every US tithe dollar is spent right here in the US for US ministry? That blows my mind, but so does the statistic on how much we spend annually on soda pop. We could give fresh water to every person on the globe I’ve heard if we just gave up the pop that rots our teeth and fattens our butts.
So what if God plants a person in front of you that wants to know more about Jesus. Are you prepared to share with them, what they need to know? Do you know how to share the Gospel, assuming you’ve made a friendship with them, and have earned the right to speak truth into their lives?
1 Peter 3:15 NIV
“But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect…”
This verse says, “ALWAYS BE PREPARED”!
When you decided to follow Jesus you were given a new song in your heart. You were made into a new creation. That makes you live life with a new perspective, do things differently, think differently.
Psalm 40:3 NLT
He has given me a new song to sing, a hymn of praise to our God. Many will see what he has done and be amazed. They will put their trust in the LORD.
He has given you a new song in your heart!
To be prepared for sharing your faith with someone that is truly hungry for Jesus, you might try this simple method. On a notebook page write down:
- LIFE BEFORE CHRIST WAS…
- WHEN I DECIDED TO FOLLOW CHRIST…
- NOW WITH CHRIST LIFE IS…
Finish each statement and keep it brief. You can write out an elaborate depiction of your conversion experience (your testimony) and then condense it. Most people cannot listen past 5 minutes, some 30 seconds! So know your audience. Think of what relates to the listener. Don’t go down rabbit trails just share the facts. Your life before Jesus was dark, lonely and missing something. Maybe you were a drug addict always looking for something to fill you up. Then you met Jesus, maybe it took twenty times but it finally stuck and now you’re hooked on a new thing, the Thing, the love of Jesus. Now life has purpose and meaning and you feel fulfilled.
I’ve heard that people can argue easily about historical evidence, about scientific facts concerning both creation and evolution but what’s really difficult to argue with is your own personal experience with life before and after Christ. So don’t be afraid to share.
Now a note on WHEN to share with someone…
Sharing Jesus doesn’t mean we force people, argue with people, or fight with people. It’s something natural liking sharing a piece of pie with someone sitting at our table after we’ve just enjoyed a big meal together. I’m not handing out dessert without coffee and without first eating supper. I’m not sharing Jesus without sharing love. I’m not sharing Jesus without first getting to know the person, being there for them as Billy Hybels said I’m not sharing Jesus without “Barbecuing first”. Rick Warren said, “Jesus doesn’t need defense attorneys”, we are only His witnesses.
Dear God we pray you would help us be Your witnesses, even when it’s hard, or scary or uncomfortable, even when we are afraid of being rejected. And show us when to talk and when to shut up and just listen and help us love in a way that we never push or force people. In Jesus’ name, Amen.