Im not always successful in reaching the lost. But I praise God for the
successes and leave the ones that arent reached to Him.
When I was growing up I had a friend, Debbie, who was not a Christian. We
grew apart as I grew in my faith.
I wanted to gain that closeness again but didnt know how. Our lives were so
different. I began inviting her to church, and she finally agreed. My heart
sang! At one service during the invitation I felt the Holy Spirit telling meno,
screaming at meTake her hand! Walk forward with her! I was so afraid she would
get angry and never come to church again that I didnt move.
My heart was broken as I walked with Debbie to her car. I finally told her
what I had felt in church, and we began to cry. She said she had wanted so much
for me to lead hershe was too afraid to make that walk alone.
So God in His mercy gave me a second chance. I led Debbie to the Lord, right
there in the church parking lot. Fear had led me to shut my ears to the Holy
Spirits prompting. I almost lost a dear friend to the enemy, because I was too
afraid of losing her from my life.
Ever notice how God brings people into our lives not only to minister
to but to be ministered by? Thats what happened when God
brought Margaret into my life.
A few years earlier she had been led to Christ by friends in a booth atof
all placesthe dairy and poultry fair! With crying eyes and a bursting heart she
had received the most precious gift. But after she accepted Christ, no one came
into her life to help her develop this new relationship.
Margaret and I met in 1994. Shes an image consultant with a cosmetics
company, and I was a walking case of acne. I found her name in the yellow pages
and called her for a consultation. Both of us felt an immediate bond. Our
relationship grew beyond that of salesperson and client. We became friends.
As I got to know her and she trusted me with her hurts and fears, I invited
her to study Gods Word with me. I bought her a womens study Bible which she
began to read daily. Her husband is from a works-based faith, and she feared he
would not understand her decision, so she kept her Bible hidden from him. Her
husband loves her, but like the fear I experienced with my friend Debbie,
Margaret didnt want to risk losing him.
Weve had a one-on-one Bible study now for almost six years, and weve both
grown from it. Ive been told that friends are a gift from God, and this is true
with Margaret. Shes a blessing. She also encourages me daily which shows me her
growth. Ive watched her grow from being scared and lost in a world she no
longer fit in to being strong and finding her way with confidence.
As shes grown in the Lord, shes also grown in boldness. She now attends
church with me. Her husband, who used to give her the silent treatment when she
ventured to church, now sees that shes up on time and the children are ready to
go with her. She speaks boldly about her faith with family members, and we cry
together as God answers one prayer after another in her life. Her husband does
not yet have a personal relationship with Christ, but God has provided Margaret
with small signs that one day he will.
As I said in the beginning, not all my attempts at evangelism are
successful. I have one little girl in my Sunday school class who I know is
reaching out for God. I asked her to stay after class for a few minutes. I told
her how much God loves her and wants her to experience His love. She cried, and
I cried with her. I hugged her and told her I loved her. Then I asked if she
wanted to ask Jesus into her heart. My heart sank when she said no. I pray for
her all the time, and I wont give up. I will love her and keep sharing Jesus
with her. One day when she accepts His gift, I pray I will be there to witness
I have figured out that God just wants openness to His calling to a
lifestyle of evangelism. I once allowed fear to drown out His great voice. I
learned from that experience thatby not sharing ChristI actually was taking a
bigger chance of losing my friend than I would have by being bold. I could have
lost her for eternity.
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