Romans 10:14 … How can they believe in the One whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone telling them?
Twenty years ago, my son came home from church camp with the weight of the world on his young shoulders. During his time at camp, he awakened to the reality of eternity and the need to share the gospel with people who don’t know Jesus.
His heart was burdened for one particular member of our family. He asked me to take him shopping so he could use his own money to buy her a Bible. Within a few days, we purchased a Bible and we were in the car for the 90-mile drive to her house.
What I didn’t tell my son was how his request filled me all kinds of anxiety. Even though I had been a faithful churchgoer and Bible teacher for years, I struggled to share my faith with unbelievers. I didn’t really know how to share the gospel.
So, when the time came for my son to present her with the Bible, I never shared the gospel with her. Instead, I talked to her about church. Sometimes, it’s easier to talk about church than to talk about Jesus.
I wish I could say this experience initiated a change in me, but it really didn’t. Instead, I made excuses to stay silent.
I’m just not an evangelist.
It’s not my gifting.
I’m not comfortable sharing my faith.
And 20 years later, I still struggle to communicate the story of the gospel with unbelievers. It’s easy for me to talk about Jesus in church. It feels safe in church. But out there? It feels scary out there.
So, after months of conviction, I took a gut-honest look at all the reasons why sharing the gospel is hard for me. It was a long list.
Reasons I didn’t share my faith
- Lack of knowledge.
- False belief that I didn’t have the gift of evangelism.
- Unbelief: I lost sight of the fact that God is working in the lives of unbelievers.
- Indifference: I didn’t feel a burden for the lost.
- It made me uncomfortable.
What about you? I know some of you can relate. What wouId you add to this list?
I also know there are some of you who can’t relate at all to what I’m saying. Some of you share the gospel easily and often. But you are not the norm. If you were the norm, churches would be packed out each Sunday.
I am not sharing this message to make you feel condemnation. Please don’t walk away feeling shamed. We’re in this together! Together let’s take an honest look at what holds us back and discover how we can grow in this area of discipleship. In the coming weeks, I’ll be talking more about how to share our faith, despite all the scary reasons we don’t want to.