Devotion: Who can I bring to Jesus?

MorningDevotionsDo I know enough people that I can bring to Jesus?

Great crowds came to Jesus, bringing with them the lame, the blind, the crippled, those who could not speak, and many others. They put them at Jesus’ feet, and he healed them. – Matthew 15:30

As I prayed through this text this morning, my heart stirred over this phrase:

Bringing with them . . . .

This could be their friends, family members, other loved ones who all had a need to experience the healing ministry of Jesus.

Praying for people I know

I began to pray through my list of friends who don’t know the Lord.

I began to pray through my circle of friends who need physical healing.

I began to pray through our supporting churches – that they too would be places where the healing ministry of Jesus is experienced.

I began to pray that our church would welcome the unsaved guests that I will invite.

As I pray for them, I keep thinking of ways to let them know about my faith in Christ.  I don’t hide my faith.

Rather, I want them to know about my walk with Christ.

What if you don’t know any non-Christians?

If you don’t think you know any non-Christians, you need to start making some new friends.

But you may already have some in your sphere of influence.

Read this: What if I don’t have any non-Christian friends?

Spend time today

Spend time today praying for your personal friends who don’t know Jesus.  Bring them before the Lord in prayer and ask the Lord to give you conversational opportunities to talk about their spiritual thirst.

 

3 Avenues of Evangelistic Prayer

Quote on PrayerA reader question via Ask EvangelismCoach wonders:

What are some prayer points for church growth?

While there are many different avenues for intercessory prayers for church growth, let me suggest 3 avenues.

1. Personal evangelism

Take some time to pray about your own personal evangelism.

(See the 10 most important articles here).

Pray for:

  • Conversational opportunities in the ordinary course of your day.
  • God’s heart for lost friends and family members
  • Growth in how live a visible, holy life.

But also begin to pray the same for the congregation that you are involved in.

Pray that more members would:

  • Grow in their personal evangelism.
  • Get God’s heart for those who are around them.
  • Connect with people who don’t know Christ.
  • Grow in their passion for personal evangelism

2. Congregational evangelism

The local church is a partner in personal evangelism.

The local church:

Pray for:

  • culture of hospitality
  • openness to give personal invitations to church
  • the worship experience, that your visitors might encounter God
  • a culture of invitation.
  • motivated volunteers who love to welcome guests.
  • your hospitality ministry leaders
  • that visitors would find their faith in Christ, or grow in their faith, as they connect.

 3. The Community

Each church is involved in mission to the local community.  That mission may take several expressions as volunteers bless the community in numerous ways.

Pray for:

  • Peace and security
  • Discovering the Father’s Heart for the community around you.
  • Avenues for where to serve the poor,
  • Ministry venues where volunteers can give themselves away
  • Favor with community and government officials.

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30 Days of Prayer — Day 23: Who is Jesus to me?

This entry is part 23 of 23 in the series 30 Days of Prayer

Now to you who believe, this stone is precious. 1 Peter 2:7

Jesus the Precious CornerstoneWhat is precious?

I’ve been pondering this word in my devotions this week while looking at the current difficult circumstances of my life.

Are the challenges I face now worth the price of my calling to follow my Savior?

Is following Jesus worth it?

Some of these challenges are the direct result of launching this ministry to an international level in the Americas.

  • Hours of travel on all sorts of transportation: by planes, trains, buses and cars.
  • International travel to 6-7 countries each year.
  • Living by offerings, monthly support, and conference fees.
  • Teaching in dangerous places where personal safety is not guaranteed.
  • Leaving my house at 4 am to teach all day and get home by 2:30am via bus
  • Learning to communicate, preach and teach in Spanish as a second language.

Are these challenges worth the price of our calling to follow my Savior?

Yes.

My relationship with Christ is the most precious thing in my life.  Obedience to His calling brings our family joy.

Seeing the fruit of this calling brings with it a deep reward that is indescribable.

  • When I see people come to faith in Christ
  • When a person pulls me aside and tells me how they havve been impacted by our teaching.
  • When pastors send me baptism pictures because they attended my conference
  • When Young Life Central American leaders help others discover what we’ve taught them.
  • “When people ask me “How can I start following Jesus too?”  It’s all worth it.

Yes, Jesus is precious to me.

Why is Jesus precious to you?

Jesus may be precious to you because He has forgiven you.

Jesus may be precious to you because He is guiding you in this life.

Jesus may be precious to you because He has healed you.

Jesus is Pastor, Savior, Friend, Healer, Redeemer, Friend, Bread of Life, Lord of All.

What image of Jesus speaks to you most deeply?  I bet there is one image of Jesus that speaks to you more than all the others.

That can help you answer the question that my friend Easum has asked:

What is it about your relationship with Jesus that your friend can’t live without?

Action for today:

  • In your journal, write down 3 of your favorite worship songs.  Find the lyrics and take the time to write them out in your journal.
  • If you have easy access to the music, sing them as an act of worship.
  • Write down the phrases that move you, give you goose bumps, or at times, brings worshipful tears to your eyes.
  • Describe what those phrases mean to you, what is it about those phrases that move you.

Today’s prayer

Lord, You are more precious than silver.
Lord, You are more costly than gold.
Lord, You are more beautiful than diamonds
And nothing I desire compares with You

Lord, reveal Yourself to my friends.  You are a precious cornerstone to me, and I pray that they would come to find You just as precious as you are.  Help me to find ways to talk about You with them that give You all the glory for how beautiful You are to me.  You are mighty to save, and You can reveal Yourself to my friends in such an undeniable way that they will want to follow You.

Resource

Of what value to you is your relationship with Jesus?

The more I explore the depths of that value, the meaning of that word, I notice something bubbling from inside of me.

I want to tell somebody.

Start here with this MP3 Download on Evangelism Training from the store ($10) to help you see where you need to grow.

It’s a 80 minute audio file that takes just a few minutes to download, but it may help you answer the question:

What can you do in the next 90 days to grow in your evangelism skills?

 

30 Days of Prayer: Day 22 – Tell of His Love

This entry is part 20 of 23 in the series 30 Days of Prayer

Jesus died for me.My faith has found a resting place,
Not in device nor creed;
I trust the Ever-living One,
His wounds for me shall plead.

I need no other argument,
I need no other plea;
It is enough that Jesus died,
And that He died for me.
– Hymn, My Faith has found a resting place

 

My hope is in the Lord Who gave Himself for me,
And paid the price of all my sin at Calvary.
For me He died, For me He lives,

And everlasting life and light He freely gives

– Hymn, For me he died, for me he lives

God’s love has worked in your life

But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. – Romans 5:8

Jesus died for you.

His death paid the price for the forgiveness of your sins.

His death and resurrection paved the way for you to enjoy fellowship with God forever.

You have been reconciled to the Father and you can now discover the outrageous  love of the Father for you.

It’s the greatest story every told.

But we fail to tell the story

We think we know the story.

But when we are put on the spot, in some random moment in a spiritual conversation, we grasp at fog.

We stumble for words.

We are not sure where to start.

We start off in one direction, and then change direction in the middle of a thought.

Most of us have fallen short in mastering being able to tell the greatest story ever told.

We might be good at telling stories of how the gospel intersected our life and how we converted to being a follower of Jesus.

But telling people the actual gospel leaves us speechless or disorganized.

Tell the story well

I once challenged a teen in my youth group to tell the gospel story to a friend.

She was nervous about it, but because we had reviewed it often in our youth group, she knew the major movements of the gospel story.

  • God loves us, but sin separates us from God
  • God’s love didn’t leave us without a solution.
  • God demonstrated his love in Christ’s death and resurrection.
  • That if we believe and confess, receive him, we become a follower of Christ.

As her gospel sharing conversation proceeded, even with conversational detours, she confidently moved through them and at the end, her friend simply said:

No one has ever shared it so clearly before.  Now I know what it means when they say “Christ died for me.”

Today’s prayer

I want to share Your story today.  I pray that You would open up a conversational door today with some person or one of my friends who would ask me about my faith in Jesus.

Fill me with a new and deeper appreciation of what Jesus has done in my life.

Grant me the skills to tell Your story without shivering in my boots.

Today’s Action

Find one of the gospel scripts and master it.

For a list of gospel scripts read this post.

I like

30 Days of Prayer – Day 21: Tell of All His Works

This entry is part 19 of 23 in the series 30 Days of Prayer

God's been good to meHow has the Lord been good to you?

If one of your friends were to ask you today:

What has God done in your life recently?

Would you be ready with an answer that is not generic?

  • God blesses me.
  • God forgives me.

Those are generic statements, versus awesome stories that demonstrate the work of God in your life.

Generic stories are boring.

Tell of the current deeds of the Lord

Look at these two citations from Scripture

Psalm 73:28 But as for me, it is good to be near God. I have made the Sovereign Lord my refuge; I will tell of all your deeds.

Isaiah 63:7 I will tell of the kindnesses of the Lord, the deeds for which he is to be praised, according to all the Lord has done for us— yes, the many good things he has done for Israel, according to his compassion and many kindnesses.

Can we tell of ALL the deeds of the Lord?

Can we share “the many good things He has done?”

Think back over the last 30 days.

How have you seen God’s kindness at work in your life?

You might see evidence of God’s work in:

  • Guidance
  • Healing
  • Love
  • Forgiveness
  • Speaking to you
  • Growing a particular fruit of the Spirit
  • A season of testing
  • To be a blessing in the life of another

God is at work in your life.

When you have the eyes to see it, and take the time to meditate on His work, you will always have a fresh story to share of God’s work.

Today’s prayer

Lord Jesus, you are actively showing me the Father’s love (John 14:7).  You are leading me to the Father’s love (John 14:6).  You are at work in my life each day, though I confess that I do not always see your works or working.

You have revealed many kindessess to me over the years, but I have not always seen them or shared them.

Allow me to see today all the new mercies and kindnesses that you show me.

Today’s Action

Spend some time reflecting on a particular story of God’s working in your life.

If you journal, write out such a story.  Be sure to tell about God’s actions, your response, and if there was specific actions you were to follow, record the results of stepping out in obedience.

Ask the Lord to give you the opportunity to share this story with someone, so that you may “tell of all of his kindnesses.”