Are you saved?
Have you forgotten how that happened?
Think about it. Did someone preach hellfire and brimstone to you, or did someone show you they loved you?
Did they hand you a Bible and send you on your way, or did they spend some time with you?
Did their example make you want to run or make you want what they had?
Are you that person for someone else?
Because it’s easy to forget that we have what the world needs. We get focused on ourselves, on our busy lives, and on just “doing” church.
We forget what we’re here for.
As “The church,” we’re called to reach up to Christ, to live lives of worship and of service. We were made to glorify God, know Him, be involved with others in the church, and to go out into the lost and dying world, sharing the love of Jesus, and making a difference.
I talk about “marketplace ministry” all of the time. Because God didn’t create everyone to work and do ministry in a literal church building. No, He created each of us to minister to others in the marketplace—in places like our jobs, our businesses, our neighborhoods, and our schools.
Look at Matthew 28:18-20. It’s not anything you haven’t heard before. Jesus is talking to His disciples. He had spent three and a half years investing in their lives and He had something important to say.
He told them to go make disciples of all the nations. He told them to reach out.
But that makes a lot of us uncomfortable, right? After all, we’re not evangelists. Evangelists scare us. Studies tell us that only 2-3% of the body of Christ are actually evangelists. And the Bible only mentions it twice. So, most of us aren’t evangelists. But there is a difference between a gift and a role. The gift of an evangelist is a gift from God where you’re anointed to be and do something, but we’re all called to fulfill the role of evangelism.
So how do we do it? How do we avoid all the uncomfortable, awkward moments?
We invest and we invite.
Invest your time in people. Spend time with them. Then invite them to have a cookout or a coffee. Invite them to come to church. Invite them to join a small group. Invite them to meet you at the playground with their kids or to bring their kids to VBS at your church.
Investing in someone else takes intentionality and effort.
We’ve got to invest some time in people’s lives. Cold turkey evangelism works some of the time, but what works all of the time is when people find genuine love and concern.
Think about it. What might happen if you began to invest in those relationships that you already have and reach the people you already know?
What might happen if you started to really pay attention to the people where you live, shop, play, and eat?
When was the last time you invited someone to church? When was the last time you sat down with someone that doesn’t go to church and had a coffee and mentioned God?
Do you even know anyone who doesn’t go to church?
(Are you starting to sweat?)
We HAVE to show people that they matter, and we HAVE to show people that we’re normal. We’re here building families, doing life, and overcoming struggles by the grace of God, and people need to see it.
Otherwise, they’re completely entitled to think we’re weird.
Seriously. Most people out there in the world think that we’re nuts. They think we don’t have any answers. There’s usually one quack “Christian” out there at their school, their job, or in their family—somebody that’s crazy, that doesn’t honor God, or love people—and that’s the only example they’ve seen.
The world needs to see Jesus.
The woman at the well knew this. After she talked to Jesus, she went back to the city and told the men to come and see the man who told her everything she ever did. She told the guys and they headed to see Jesus. At the same time, the disciples were talking to Jesus. He told the disciples to lift up their eyes and look because the harvest was white right now. It was ready and He wanted them to stop waiting. Right then, a flood of men was coming out of the city with white turbans on their heads. They were coming to see Jesus. They were the harvest.
But they were Samaritans—they didn’t get along with the Jews. The disciples saw them as problems.
Who do you see as a problem?
See, too often, we’re blind to the harvest. That’s why Jesus said lift up your eyes.
Don’t live blind to the harvest, or focused on yourself, or too busy, or just “doing” church.
Lift up your eyes.
SEE the overlooked, underappreciated, hurting, rejected people around you.
And get busy investing and inviting.
There’s great reward in reaching out to people. There’s great reward in partnering with God to change lives. Click on this blog’s offer to discover how you can partner with God in the “people business” and experience incredible new levels of success.