Personal Mission Field
For a thing, the hiding and hushing up of which is harmful, it is not profitable to conceal or stifle; for that reason it seemed better to us to speak, however rudely, than to keep silence; for indeed we judged it safer to talk about these things than about others that are either trifles or superfluities.
- Columbanus, Sermon XIII (Irish, 7th century)
...and my speech and my message were not in plausible words of wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and power...
- 1 Corinthians 2.4
We are a generation who prefers to major in the minors. Nowhere is this more apparent than in our speech.
Our conversations, to be blunt, are not very profound. Nor do they carry much lasting spiritual significance. We talk about work, family, the weather, what's on the news, and assorted other types of small talk. That's OK; there's a place for this in the prosecution of our ministries and our walk with the Lord.
But not if this is all we ever talk about. It's no secret that Gospel-believing Christians have pretty much given up on being Gospel-communicators. We don't talk to others about our own faith in Christ, and we don't urge them to consider the Gospel for themselves. We keep our religion to ourselves, either out of fear of what others will think about us or of some vague notion of "respect" for their privacy.
What could be more harmful than failing to give someone the life-giving antidote to the sting of sin and death? We may have but little confidence in our ability to share the faith with others, but all God asks is that, like Paul, we open our mouths and begin to speak. He'll take it from there.
A generation ago John Stott published a little book entitled, Our Guilty Silence, which was designed to shame his contemporaries into a bolder and more consistent witness for Christ. It seemed to have some effect. At least, for a while.
Now we have become reticent about our faith once again, and who is there to pique and spur us on in our proper calling?
Today, you will have opportunities to talk with others about Jesus Christ. Whether they are believers or unbelievers, you are sent, like Jesus (Jn. 20.21), to bear witness to the Good News of the Kingdom.
Prepare now. Pray for the folks you're going to meet, that God would ready their hearts. Pray for yourself. Figure out even now how you're going to get the conversation started. Take with you a small book or tract to leave with your friend after the conversation is over.
But don't do nothing. You can know the power of God's Spirit filling you, engaging your mind, heart, and tongue, and using you to proclaim the name of Jesus Christ. The opportunity will come today.
Don't miss it if you can.
Today at The Fellowship of Ailbe
Taking Up the Challenge of Evangelism - We're forming an online class to learn how to be more consistent in our witness for Christ, and then to teach our fellow church members. If you're interested and would like to participate, send me an email with questions, and for additional information.
ReVision - Has the Church been perpetually and finally dismissed from all public discussions about matters of truth? Ask your pastor.