21 Nov
2012

To Market for Eggs and Souls

“…And how I kept back nothing that was profitable unto you, but have shown you, and have taught you publicly, and from house to house, testifying both to the Jews, and also to the Greeks, repentance toward God, and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ.  And now, behold, I go bound in the spirit unto Jerusalem, not knowing the things that shall befall me there…”  Acts 20:20-22

For a number of years now I have found it difficult to make a simple errand, such as picking up eggs at the local grocery store, without feeling “bound in the spirit” for the souls around me.   I can’t seem to go anywhere without thinking about people’s souls.  Needless to say, it is very inconvenient and I usually end up ignoring the promptings in my heart, sometimes due to time restraints, but often out of disbelief and fear. 

The work of evangelism is both glorious and emotionally draining at the same time; it is what I want to do more than anything else, and what I don’t want to do more than anything else.  It is full of meaning and purpose, and yet every time my stomach churns and I want to just crawl away into a cave and eat Captain Crunch cereal and forget all about the world.  Why can’t I be normal and just buy my eggs and leave?  I can’t.

Praying for the Opportunity

So then I pray for guidance, “Lord, I don’t have much time at all, but I’ve got a minute to pass out one gospel of John.  Jesus, I don’t want to spook anyone so please give me discernment to know who and when…”  The Lord always answers that prayer with just the right timing, but I’ve got to act on it right away or the moment is eternally gone, and I’ve lost the opportunity I had just prayed for. 

This happened twice recently.  A few days ago, while my girls were playing at the park, there was a young woman waiting for her ride and just standing around; I felt compelled to offer her a bible, yet I was hesitating.  I didn’t want to; what if I spooked her?  But I felt only more compelled the more I continued to hesitate. 

Finally, I obeyed the Lord’s prompting and asked her if she had ever read scripture. It was the beginning of a beautiful conversation but as soon as it started, her ride arrived and I was out of time.  If I had only obeyed right away there would have been plenty of time to have shared the gospel with this dear young lady who showed interest; it was obvious I missed a perfect opportunity.  

Another Missed Opportunity

This hesitating happened yesterday as well.  I was running an errand and was in a bit of a rush but I had at least one moment to pass out one gospel of John.   I prayed for the right opportunity.   Then I saw it, and I knew it; as I was walking to my car, I saw a woman cleaning her windshield in the parking lot, and taking her time at it.  I knew it would be nothing to simply ask if she would like a gospel of John.  I hesitated, and lost the right moment. 

Later I noticed she was sitting in her car waiting for someone, bored with nothing to do.  Another missed opportunity for a short but meaningful conversation and, what’s worse, she would have had plenty of time with nothing else to do but look at the scripture I would have provided. 

When I miss those moments I pray for the those I think the Lord was prompting me to talk to, and I ask for His grace, and I ask for more confidence and for instant obedience for the future.  Sometimes I do it right, and those times are always so rewarding and exhilarating; they are highlights in my life. 

God Answers Evangelistic Prayers Quickly

I’ve been praying about setting aside an hour a week just for street evangelism and the Lord has been quick in answering these prayers.  For instance, I prayed that my girls would be well cared for, and the Lord quickly provided another homeschool mother eager to care for my girls on Wednesdays while at co-op.  So that need has been satisfied.  

For safety reasons, I need another woman to go with me.  Yesterday morning during my devotions I prayed about this need, specifically asking for another woman evangelist that would be available around 11:30 on Wednesdays.   Then, that morning at church, I spoke to an evangelist who mentored another woman in street evangelism on Wednesday afternoons, but this other woman was moving out of town.   And so, seeing that the Lord was answering my specific prayer from that morning, I simply said, “then would you be available on a weekly basis to mentor me on Wednesday afternoons, at about 11:30 am?”  She quickly responded with ‘yes’, she would be available after Thanksgiving.  Perfect.  Thanks be to God. 

Good Fruit in Only a Minute

It takes only a minute or two to pass out a tract and so just about any trip outside my home can become a mini mission trip, even when time restrains me.  And I am believing more and more that this burden for souls is not my imagination, but rather the working of the Holy Spirit within me, and as such it must not be disregarded.  The more I act on this belief, the stronger I believe it next time because I taste the good fruit my action has produced, and I get to personally witness the kingdom of God advancing. 

I even taste the good fruit when I am rejected.  Rejection is an honor, even a joy, because my Lord was dispised and rejected, and He has promised comfort and blessing when the world rejects me because of Him.  “Blessed are you, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake.” Matthew 5:11

I have sat idle too long, waiting for the world to come to me.  Though I have been a believer for 23 years no one has ever asked me about my quiet hope.  I going to them instead.  I’m going fishing!

 

So, what do you think?