Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Evangelism (11/01/07)
TITLE: What Is Evangelism?
By AJ Woodson
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Evangelism in my opinion can not be reduced to a simple formula. To me is simply means to teach, preach, lead and spiritually uplift others. Depending on the group of people you are trying to reach, it can take on many different forms. Myself I have been involved in the hip-hop industry for 20 plus years. So what I do make look different than say someone reaching folks in Middle America.
Last year I did a massive landscaping job for a co worker of my wife. After planting several plants, trees, bushes and shrubs through out the different flower beds, I noticed all the plants didn’t grow the same. Some took right away and needed very little attention, some needed extra watering, some needed extra miracle grow or root stimulator. Yet some other needed to be replanted in a more shaded area or where they could receive maximum sun.
There were others that just didn’t grow at all no matter what I did and some that looked like they would grow and eventually flourished because I didn’t give up on them. This was my first experience in a landscaping job of that magnitude and I have to admit I got frustrated when some of the plants died no matter what I did, and was glad I didn’t give up on others that finally grew.
I used that example because evangelism is a lot like that. You will not always see results as you preach and teach God’s Word. God gives us a choice and you can not force an individual to believe. It does follow a mathematical equation like 4:1 ratio of seeds planted to seeds sprouted. People respond differently because they are in different states of readiness. It’s the miracle of God’s Holy Spirit as He uses you to lead others to Him.
He said to His disciples, “The harvest is so great, but the workers are so few. So pray to the Lord who is in charge of the harvest; ask Him to send out more workers for His fields.” – Matthew 9: 37-38
We as Christians, as believers we should all be personally responsible to pass on the gospel of Christ. Jesus needs workers, who know how to deal with people’s problems. Who can comfort others and show them the way to live and helped them with their problems through our own personal testimonies. (2 Corinthians 1: 3-7)
Make no mistake about it, takes a lot of patience and perseverance and it will not be easy. We have to understand when talking to people that it takes time to accept something that changes the very foundation of their very existence. Sharing the gospel will not always have immediate results. When you approach people about letting Jesus change their life you have to give them time to weigh the matter. We must allow them to ask questions and give them time to put the pieces together so to speak.
There are many who are “a ripe field for harvest,” and Jesus referred to them. Many people are ready to give their lives to Christ if someone would just show them how. But there will also be times you will reach some and never know. Like that plants that showed no sign of life put came up later that season or early the next season, all we can do is plant the seeds and leave the rest to God.
Jesus commands us to pray that people will respond to the needs of His workers. Many times when we pray for something, God answers our prayers by using us. Be prepared for God to use you to show another person the way!
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