When I was younger, I remember hearing my pastor tell the congregation that he wasn’t exactly a handy person. In fact, he said that on a work site when armed with a hammer he got the nickname “Lightning” because he never struck the same place twice. It true that for some people, myself included, the proclivity to wield tools does not come naturally. My guess is that some people feel the exact same way when it comes to sharing the Gospel. They feel as if sharing God’s word is outside of their skill set and better left to the professionals. Truth is that sharing the Gospel can be quite a daunting task. What if we say the wrong thing or we get a Bible verse wrong? What if in our fumbling we do a disservice to the principals of the Christian faith? The reality of attempting to lead someone down a road that leads to the cross can seem insurmountable and impossible to get right. However, it is something that we are called to endeavor to do as followers of Christ. So, then the question becomes, how do we share the Gospel successfully? How to we equip God’s people for a lifetime of faithful service?
When I think of the word “equipped” I can’t help but think of a tool belt. If you’ve ever seen a competent person on a work site they are not only equipped with a tool belt with every imaginable tool in it, but they know how to use those tools properly. When a need arises, their hands need go no further than their hips to find the right gadget to accomplish the job. It isn’t just about owning or possessing the tool itself, but about the experience and training that they bring when employing the object to fix a problem. Even when it comes to something as simple as swinging a hammer, it can be clear at a moments notice who has experience and who is likely to hit their thumb. God wants us not only to possess the tools that we need but to be familiar with how to best exercise his truth to achieve Kingdom results.
This takes time and effort and can profoundly push some outside of their comfort zone. It might mean risking a reputation and being known as the “church guy” or to risk being comfortable as sharing the Gospel is an uncertainty in how it’s received. For some the idea of talking to another person or finding themselves in a tense conversation is a nightmare realized. For this we can take heart because God has equipped his children with a myriad of skills. For some the best way to equip others is to be a mouth piece and to verbally share his gospel, but for many more I suspect that the best Gospel presentation will simply be a life lived in accordance with God’s will for your life. We should never underestimate the incredible power of acting in a manner worthy of the Gospel. I think that faith genuinely lived out is the biggest precedent for others being attracted to a commitment to Christ.
So, know that God has called you above and beyond what you thought was possible. Know that he wants you to love him enough to seek his voice and to trust him enough to act when he calls upon you. God never wastes gifts or talents and whatever gift he’s seen fit to give you he will use to further his kingdom if only you will let him. Be confident in your faith, and be familiar with his truth. Know how to utilize the tools that God has made available to you and most importantly use to those tools to help build a community that changes the world.
- Kellan Peterson, Student Ministry Director