Lately, I have been feeling the Lord place on my heart a desire that I never saw coming. Evangelism, or telling more and more people about Jesus Christ. It is something that people often have a natural gifting for or longing to do with their lives, and I can honestly admit that I am not innately gifted nor have I felt a strong desire to tell others about Jesus...not because I'm ashamed or embarrassed, but because I've never felt as if I have enough knowledge or authority to do so. Oh, how wrong I have been!
At the previously mentioned conference I attended, I sat in on an elective called "Go and Tell It, Share It and Show It", which was focused on sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ with others! Though it was geared toward junior high and high school aged girls, I was nonetheless cut to the heart over my fear of sharing Jesus.
I am a strong advocate of testimony sharing, mainly due to the fact that God has used my own story countless times in the last year to glorify Himself. Previous to a mission trip I went on last December, I avoided sharing who I used to be (before I became a Christian) with those who knew me for who I was (as a Christian). I was ashamed of my story, guilt-ridden over my past, and truly scared that I would be judged and looked at differently by others I'd come to love. Yet the Lord pushed me to pursue a mission halfway across the world to Amsterdam, and it was there that He broke down my walls and provided me an opportunity to share my story, in all of its messiness and heartbreak, with dozens of Christians and non-Christians. I realized in my processing of that trip that His purpose in sending me there was to reveal the truth that this is not just simply my story, but rather a small part of His grand story. It is a story of brokenness, redemption, and powerful transformation in the life of a daughter in desperate need of her Father. Since then, I have shared the story that He has given me many times, including at one of my university's weekly chapels. He has used this story - my testimony - to glorify Himself and to, I hope, lead others to the recognition of His ability to truly lift one of His children out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire, and to set their feet on the rock of salvation (Psalm 40:2).
I praise God for the life and story that He has gifted me with, and while sharing that story with others is wonderful and has the potential lead people to faith in Christ, there is simply something even greater about sharing Jesus' story. Leading others to the cross should be the goal of our lives; after all, it is our calling! In Matthew 28:19-20, widely known as the great commission, Jesus calls His disciples to share the gospel in order to advance the kingdom. Please don't make the mistake of thinking that this doesn't apply to you. If you follow Christ, you are actually commanded to share your faith! And it is absolutely pressing that we share Jesus' story! Jesus never lost sight of His goal: "For the Son of Man came to seek and save the lost" (Luke 19:10). His goal in His life, in His death, and in His resurrection was and will continue to always be to seek and save the lost! Therefore, we must share our faith because of who Jesus is, what Jesus did on the cross for us, and what His resurrection means!
I am not naturally good at "evangelizing"...in fact, I'm not even very fond of the term. I am not entirely comfortable telling others about Jesus Christ's sacrifice. But that doesn't matter! God has called all of us to share the stories that He has given us and the story of His Son with others regardless of our own feelings, whether they be fear, inadequacy, etc. He has commanded us to share the gospel, to make disciples of all nations, and to trust Him to work in and through us!
For the past few weeks, I have sensed the Lord placing a passion on my heart for continued sharing of His stories. I have been consistently praying for a heart for evangelism: for sharing with others my own story and the story of Jesus Christ. I continue to pray that His Spirit would convict me, that He would refine me as necessary, that He would prepare me for what He has in store, and that He would equip me now with the things I will need for the journey.
I pray that you, too, will share what you know: share the story of Jesus! Don't make the mistake of thinking that you don't know enough, because here's the thing: God is going to do His thing with or without you, but you have an opportunity to be used by the King! So start talking to others about Jesus, and always lead them to the cross! Make it your life's goal, and trust that He will use you. Trust me, He will.