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 Post subject: Reflections on why we witness
PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2013 2:17 pm 
Caramel Crunch
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Joined: Fri Dec 28, 2012 4:49 pm
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Pardon me for posting this long, rambling narrative. If you aren't scared away by the excessive amount of text and actually start to read this...chances are you will fall asleep shortly.

This is just my typing as the thoughts come, so if you actually read this, excuse the bad writing.

I was reading a book and the following struck me as sad: “A human pole count of world population, which was taken in the year 2000 revealed that there are about 6 billion people in the whole world. The question is, how long would it take to evangelize the whole world if you led just one person to Christ each day, and each one of those people did the same? Hard question! In other words, today I win one, tomorrow we each win one, the next day each one of us wins one, and it keeps going on and on. (We are also imagining that each one of those people received Christ right away and set out to do the same thing and got the same results. I guessed probably 30 years. After checking this out with some global evangelism organizations, I still didn’t believe it, so I also multiplied this all up. (A task which took me quite a long time to do!) OK, are you ready for this…I found out. It would only take 33 days.”

This really gave me a few thoughts.

1. Are we discussing poker or souls?

There’s nothing wrong with what the author is saying. I’m not trying to take this paragraph out of context. But I don’t like the way that evangelizing has turned into some kind of game. There is an Odyssey episode called ‘You win some, you lost some’. It’s true that when we plant seeds in someone’s life, it can fall on rocky soil…we aren’t responsible for others decisions. We can't MAKE them accept Jesus.

But witnessing is so much more winning the multitudes. It’s about caring for the individuals. And the individuals make up the masses, so we don’t need to worry about that. If you weren’t a believer, how would you feel if you heard people discussing you in those terms. ‘Ok we need to win __, then maybe she’ll win this person and that person, and then we’ll be close to our 33 day goal.’

Billboards, commercials and ads in the paper are great ways of advertising. Is that how witnessing should be? Show off the product, hope for results and move on? I don’t think when Jesus directed us to share His message of salvation throughout the earth, he wanted us to mainly advertise. He may call us to missions, or to live in another country…but our immediate focus should be on where we are planted RIGHT NOW. He had a reason for giving you the family he did, in the area he did We need to PLANT seeds, not SCATTER seeds. Sometimes that means stooping down and getting dirty. Turning faces into numbers and souls into score points doesn’t sound like God’s love.

2. Performance anxiety in regards to witnessing can be harmful.

“Peter faced the growing crowds, waiting for the milling mob to settle down enough so that he could be heard. He should be fighting butterflies in his stomach and nervous doubts. Here he was, an uneducated fisherman, ready to address this great assembly. He was no orator. No scholar. No learned man. He had no training. No qualifications. No prior experience. His hands were used to pulling at oars and hefting nets. He could gut a fish, hoist an anchor, and trim a sail-but this? Even so, Peter stood calmly. He was no slave to his doubts that tried to plague his mind. He was free in Christ, and nothing could turn him away from telling these people the truth. The wonderful good news. So Peter cleared his throat and lifted his voice. The crowds fell into rapt silence as the words poured out over them. Words of life. Words of hope. Words of salvation. An invitation of freedom.“ Lucado, Max. Experiencing the Heart of Jesus. 2003. Print.

FREEDOM. Something that no other religion can offer. Stories in the religion of Ancient Egypt, Indian myths, and selective Middle-Eastern religions can sound somewhat similar to Christianity. Common ground for the unstable ground of false religion is self-worth that relies on following a set of rules…acts…works. 'If you’re a good person you'll go to heaven.' 'Follow these rules and you'll be set for eternity.' That's a secular take on it.
Also the Pharisees were into rules. When you’re living and imparting God’s perfect definition of love, you don’t have to worry that you haven’t obeyed some part of the Law, do you? When you are fulfilling the law of love, you don’t have to be concerned about fulfilling a bunch of rules, regulations, and laws. You can’t argue over whether or not we have to obey the Ten Commandments because the love of law includes the Ten Commandments. The need to witness shouldn't turn into an expression of 'law'.

In conclusion, are we reacting merely out of incentive? Even if it's a good one. Are we really looking into people's eyes and trying to reach THEIR heart, not just trying to make ourselves feel good? Are we witnessing out of the pure desire to share the good news?

“It is one of the defects of my character that I cannot altogether dislike anyone who makes me laugh.”

Emily Rules!

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