God Answered My Prayer Within Hours

12/04/2007

Here's the truth: I stink at evangelism. I know some people that are really gifted in evangelism, people that are able to share the gospel with anyone at any time. They share the gospel with Starbuck's Baristas, Wal-Mart cashiers, doctors, car mechanics, and anyone else that happens to cross their path. They have unnatural, God-given boldness. They don't fear rejection, or the awkward silence that follows telling someone about Jesus.

I'm not like this at all. I'm timid and I hate awkward situations. I'm not a big fan of rejection. I would be more comfortable inviting a Starbuck's Barista to a manure shoveling party than to church. But I desperately want to grow. I hate my fear of man that keeps me from proclaiming the glories of Christ crucified to a dying and desperate world. I hate my sinful timidity. I want God-given, unnatural, gospel-preaching boldness.

Which brings me to this past Sunday. The sermon was on the role of the Holy Spirit in the life of the Christian, and one of the application points was that the Holy Spirit gives us boldness to proclaim the gospel. When these words were spoken I felt my heart stir within me. After the sermon I asked one of the small group leaders in the church to pray for me that God would increase my boldness and help me to grow in sharing the gospel.

Fast forward approximately 4 hours. I've just finished playing basketball with a number of guys from church, plus two guys I don't know. After the game, I walk over to one of the guys and start talking to him. We make small talk for a while, discussing college, the business world, and wearing a shirt and tie everyday. Then I ask him about church. He doesn't do church too much he tells me. At this point I would normally end the conversation with a half-hearted invitation to the church. But things keep going.

We talk about what it means to have a personal faith in Jesus, and I'm able to share about how God has changed my life. I'm also able to share a portion of the gospel with him, explaining that I'm a sinner before God, and that I need Jesus in my life. He listens while I talk. Doesn't argue, doesn't put up any smoke screens. Just listens. Then we go our separate ways.

I went home rejoicing! God had answered my prayer for boldness, giving me both the opportunity and the courage to share the gospel. How grateful I am to God.

And so now I hereby proclaim this "International Share The Gospel" week. Ask God for two things today. First, ask for the courage to share the gospel. Second, ask Him for the opportunity to share the gospel. These are prayers that God loves to answer.

After you share the gospel with someone this week, tell us about it via comment. I can't wait to hear the stories.

Posted by Stephen Altrogge at 8:00 AM  

6 comments:

I absolutely love this idea! I struggle with the same thing-- I love getting into conversations like that with people I know, but having the boldness to start up gospel-centered conversations with strangers in every situation is really difficult. It's true though that when you pray for the opportunity, God will give it to you!
I love that you've named this week... let's spread the word! I'll link you on my blog (:

Nikki Bonham said...
December 4, 2007 at 10:07 PM  

Thanks Nikki! I hope God give you lots of opportunities to share the gospel this week!

December 4, 2007 at 10:29 PM  

This is an awesome story.

When we pray, we can notice what God is doing. God is at work, do you see it?

Bless you in your adventures and keep sharing your faith.

Pastor Chris
EvangelismCoach.org

December 5, 2007 at 8:17 AM  

Thanks Chris. I hope God also give you many more adventures in evangelism...

December 5, 2007 at 9:14 AM  

Last night at about 11, I was in need of coffee. I had run out of coffee in my dorm room, so I went downstairs to get coffee from a friend, with whom I've had several conversations about Jesus. They've mostly been short conversations, but I've been praying that we could have a nice, long, challenging discussion about the gospel before the semester ends.
It turns out that he was about to make a cup himself, so we went up to my room to drink a some together. The topic of Jesus came up, and we were able to talk about our lives and what God has done to save us humans. What followed was a long, deep conversation about the gospel. He came for coffee, and he left two hours later with a lot to think about.

It's amazing to see God answer those prayers!

Ben said...
December 5, 2007 at 3:53 PM  

Ben,

That's such a cool story. Sharing the gospel with someone is so exciting. I hope God gives you many more opportunities...

December 5, 2007 at 9:45 PM  

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