It could have been anybody. This is not about the fact that I was the person who handed Charles a card asking him to study. I did nothing brave at all. We just got stuck in a line with a long wait and started talking about how this particular WalMart is our favorite Walmart, despite the long wait that day. When I handed the real person who was checking me out (That’s why I sometimes still like to actually go through a check-out line) a card inviting her to study the Bible, I just turned around and said “Here’s one for you, too.” It was nothing hard or heroic at all about me. (And I certainly did not intend for Glenn to mention my name as he talked from the baptistry.)
But Charles is just about the most excited new Christian I’ve ever seen. At the lunch table at Nothing but Noodles yesterday, I watched him nearly glowing with the joy that is evident when someone knows he is now part of a family headed for heaven.
I just want to list a few reasons why we hesitate to do tiny little things that might lead to a knowledge of salvation in someone who crosses our path. (I know these things because I am so very guilty. I am certainly, in no sense, enough. I am, in every sense, inadequate and struggling as I try to tell the good news.)
- I am not good at keeping those cards in my purse. They are always in the car.
- It’s just easier on a bad day when I have so much on my mind, to stay in my shell and speak only when spoken to.
- I am in a big hurry. There’s a filthy house at home waiting. There’s company coming this weekend. My cabin needs cleaning. I have to speak this weekend. There’s Digging Deep.
- I am embarrassed to be viewed as one of those fanatics.
- This is a man. He might be dangerous. He could stalk me.
- This person looks like he is going to ask me for money instead of a Bible study. (Profiling the prospects—PTP!)
- I am serving in other ways that are more suited to me. (Digging Deep can be my excuse for not doing personal evangelism.)
- Someone once was rude to me when I tried to hand her an invitation to worship.
- Most of the time people are just not interested, anyway. This is just not the best way to evangelize.
- Even if the person responds and even if she is baptized, the majority of the people with whom I have studied have eventually fallen away.
Now, one reason I have to keep telling myself that those little invitations need to keep happening.
- There may be at least one soul around the throne who, because of the blood—the blood introduced through a little paper square (or other rectangle) with some personal contact info on it—received forgiveness of sin.
That eternal difference, if even for one soul, is the magic eraser that just goes up and erases points one through ten in the above list. They matter none, if just one. They matter none, if just one. They are voided if one soul makes it to the throne through the outreach. I don’t know, for sure, that any soul with whom I have studied will be around the throne. But, I do know for sure that, without the study on my part or on someone’s part, they will NOT be there. That’s enough.
But what’s really enough, is the grace that He has shown for my soul. How can I be oblivious to those around me who need it just as much as I do?
You can watch here: IMG_2910