Holy Spirit, Jesus, Courage, Boldness, Faith, Bravery, Witness, Evangelism, Peter, John, Acts, Apostles
Penny and I took a stroll round Osterley gardens yesterday. The reason for going was to make the most of the opportunity to use our National Trust membership to the full before it expires on Sunday. It was a lovely stroll, but we received unexpected lessons in making the most of every opportunity at the same time.
The scriptures in Ephesians and Colossians came to mind;
“Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil.” (Ephesians 5:15–16 NIV11-GK)
“Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity. Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.” (Colossians 4:5–6 NIV11-GK)
Let me share the experience with you and three lessons for evangelism that seem relevant to me.
Sometime life throws us the unexpected. We’ve been experiencing unseasonably cold weather in March. This time last year we were basking in temperatures of 21 Celsius. Yesterday’s prayer-walk was in the snow. I came across the scene in the photograph – buds encased in ice. It seemed symbolic of the random nature of life.
I spent time with a friend yesterday who was lamenting recent events in his life. He felt that every time he was about to make a breakthrough in life something knocked him back. What was the point of that, he wondered? I didn’t have an answer, but many people in the Bible understand our plight.
Take Job. His life went from bliss to tragedy in a moment – and it was not of his own making. Yet Job acknowledged that God does not need to account for what He causes or allows, “He is not a mere mortal like me that I might answer him, that we might confront each other in court.” (Job 9:32 NIV11-GK).
I love Job because he is very real about his pain and confusion. He is honest to himself, his friends and God. As a result he finds his way to a painful but transformative encounter with God. Perhaps that is the point of confusion. If we are confused we seek answers and, Jesus said, “seek and you will find” (Matthew 7:7 NIV11-GK). We may not find an answer, but we might find we do not need one. And, we will surely find ourselves closer to God.
Instead of bemoaning the unseasonal ‘snow’ in your life, why not seek the snow’s maker? Perhaps you will find, as Job did, a healthier relationship with God.