|Photo Credit: Navigators.org
In view of today’s devotion passage which centres on evangelism, I believe that God is prompting me to share something buried deep down in my heart which I’ve always wanting to share but had never dare to do so. The fear of being condemned by the believers of Christ had made me pursed my lips tight for a very long time.That is, why do we Christians have to practise evangelism when half of the world out there probably resistant against Christianity? That selfish thought could have sprung out from that selfless side of me. And why some Christians “forcing” other non-Christians to join their side of league? Is evangelism all about recruiting people to church and increasing church membership to show how powerful and mighty the religion is? The church scores another goal and everyone in the congregation applauds and cheers. I wasn’t quite on terms with the word “evangelism”.
The negativity towards evangelism was fuelled by several encounters with the so-called “Christ’s ambassadors” who came knocking on my door in an insistent and clamorous manner that made me quiver in fear, occasionally barging in without a warning. My first encounter was this middle-aged lady who consistently “haunts” my elder brother to hook him up with her church. I was about 9 or 10 years old so I had no idea what was really going on or even how my brother had met her. Every single day, she would make phone calls, looking for my brother but he refuses to answer her calls. When all else fails, she would make impromptu house visits. For the first few visits, my mum would let her into our house and the lady would engage in a long conversation with my brother, persuading him to accept Christ. It came to a point where my family felt that she was pushy and my mum,in particular,was uncomfortable with her way of involving my brother with Christ, so my mum asked me to help keep her away from my brother.
“Any body’s home?”
From then on, the subsequent encounters I had with Christians always made me weary and uncomfortable. On my very first day of lectures in university, I met my ex-college friend in the science canteen and started to chat. For whatever reasons, we stumbled upon the topic of religion. At that point in time, she’s a Christian but I’m not.
” Do you believe in God?” She asked.
“Yes I do. But I just don’t go to church.” I replied.
” Do you believe that there is ONE God?”
” Hmmm…maybe or maybe not. I do respect other religions too. ” I said.
My callous reply could have trigger a chain reaction in her as she started firing me with a thread of questions on why I should believe there is only ONE GOD in this universe. She sounded really defensive and rather agitated when she bombarded me with questions like, ” Who do you think made the universe? How did humans come into existence? The voice in her head is probably screaming, “why doesn’t Deenise believe in GOD? For He who made the Heavens and the earth? “
And I thought: ” This girl’s crazy. Why is she being so defensive? She’s totally brainwashed.”
Needless to say, the way some of my Christian friends practise evangelism really do spur some anti-Christ thoughts in me because the God that I knew of, is loving and people who are touched by His presence will come naturally to Him. So, why are some Christians trying so hard to nudge non-Christians to go to the Church? I was invited by my Christian friends to attend church services and activities but none of them actually came forward to ask me, ” Would you like to commit your life to Jesus Christ?” Is being a Christian all about attending church services and listening to sermons? Is the sharing about the gospel with strangers on the streets an effective way to bring people closer to Christ?
But today, after reading Selwyn’s devotional scripture-based thoughts, I am starting to see a clearer picture as the cloud of dust disappears and dissolves to give a clear solution in the glass jar. One thing for sure is that the God that we know is never pushy or forceful.In fact, He gave us a choice, a free-will to love Him freely (Romans 6:16). But we can only believe in ONE GOD because we cannot serve two masters at the same time. Can you afford to love two women (or men) the same time, showing equal amount of affection? You either stand within the hula-hoop or outside the hoop because when you position yourself on the rim of the hula-hoop, you will stumble and fall.
Yes, indeed, it’s difficult to make a stance and stick to it. God knew that people could be led astray, like lost sheep wandering about in wild fields, exposed to the dangerous world out there, where they would be eaten by wolves or attack by other carnivores. That’s where evangelism comes into the picture. The believers of Christ standing in the hoop cast their ropes out to those lost souls in hope that these lost souls would gripe on tightly while the saviors of Jesus Christ pulls the ropes, drawing them into the hoop. Sometimes the fear of losing these “lost sheep” might translate into anxiety when they tried to pull the ropes with all their might and end up inflicting minor wounds on the “lost sheep”. But, at least, these sheep were saved. And God wanted his sons and daughter to save as many lost sheep as possible by sharing the good news of Jesus Christ.
As Christians, we are compelled through obedience to share the Gospel.For the bible proclaimed in Matthew 28:18-20, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
Cast your ropes to save the forsaken ones today.
Let there be an outflow of love through our expressions so that spiritual staleness is no where near us.
I hope by sharing and writing about God’s words in this blog can help in sharing the good news of our beautiful savior.
|” God gave us free will; He gave us choice. We were made in His image and God gave us free will in order for us to freely love Him and worship Him. Worshiping God is our purpose and God gave us free will in order for us to fulfill our purpose.”
– Romans 6:16