I was blessed to be brought up hearing about Jesus and to find forgiveness in Him at an early age. I was active in serving within the church. Yet at the same time, I could count on one hand the people I’d shared the gospel with—and then, it had been quite poorly.
It’s not that I didn’t want to share—I did. Only I was scared. What if I said the wrong thing and turned someone off? What if they asked a question I couldn’t handle? Besides, I didn’t even have opportunities to share, did I? Naturally reserved as I was, I was hardly the kind of girl to approach a stranger.
Several years ago, though, God began convicting my heart in this area.
One time while out with friends, one of the people in the group stopped and shared the gospel with a homeless man—a man I had walked right by. That interaction got me thinking. Perhaps I had more opportunities than I thought.
Later, I attended the funeral for a man who actively shared the gospel. Each person who came was given a gospel of John to give away. That gospel burned a whole in my pocket for months. I simply couldn’t figure out how to give it away.
I began asking God to show me how to share Him and absorbing the resources He sent. I collected tracts, watched videos, and read books. I watched countless YouTube videos from Ray Comfort (LivingWaters.com). As I prayed more for the lost around me, my heart grew heavier for their salvation. But I still couldn’t bring myself to actually hand out a tract or start a conversation.
I eventually got invited to join a group that was going to a local mall to witness. I started the evening so scared I was convinced the ground would open up and swallow me, but then I got to watch the kind of amazing conversations we were able to have with complete strangers. I wish I could describe the joy of watching the Lord work in someone’s heart as I shared—I couldn’t believe I’d let fear keep me from the incredible privilege of proclaiming the Good News.
Now, many years and hundreds of gospel conversations later, I continue to be amazed at the divine appointments God has, and at how evangelism blesses me, reminding me of God’s salvation, and driving me to my knees and His Word.
As I look back, there are two key truths that helped me—and they are truths I have to keep going back to. The first is the reality of eternity. One analogy that Ray Comfort shared really got to me: that of a burning building. If a building was on fire, I wouldn’t worry about whether I was interrupting someone or if I said it the right way or if they thought I was crazy; I would tell people the building was on fire! Did I not believe that those around me were in even greater danger? A famous atheist put it well: “How much do you have to hate somebody to believe that everlasting life is possible and not tell them that?”
The second truth is that evangelism isn’t about me. A good deal of my fear and nervousness comes when I fall into thinking I have to have it figured out or get it right. Yet evangelism is about the message, not the messenger.
If you’ve not yet experienced the joy of sharing Jesus with someone, I hope you won’t wait to begin! Evangelism is a huge privilege God offers to each one of His children.
First published in the Immanuel Bible Church Women’s Ministry Newsletter; reprinted with permission.