Personal evangelism can be as normal as breathing.
Don’t believe me?
I had an appointment with a friend, but he canceled it.
He changed his mind, forgot to tell me, and showed up anyway.
While drinking coffee with him, he began talking about his spiritual life.
He started it. I listened.
He described the emptiness he felt inside.
He described how he wanted to know God, even prayed, but still felt very empty.
He talked about a new yearning to read the Bible and was having a growing admiration of Jesus.
As I listened and asked the occasional question for clarification, I recognized the advance working of the Holy Spirit.
It was one of those moments where the Holy Spirit had prepared this man: all elements were in place.
- Spiritual restlessness
- Spiritual dissatisfaction
- Reading Scriptures in search for the answers
- Self-awareness of his own separation from God
- Prior experiences of knowing God’s sacred presence and wanting more.
The back story
I’ve had other conversations with this man over the past few weeks.
The Holy Spirit had been using elements of each conversation to increase that spiritual thirst.
Yet I was not the only Christian in his life — he’s had other Christian influences.
He had been reading the Bible for the last few weeks.
He had been looking at YouTube videos.
He’s had other life circumstances that brought him to this place around my coffee table.
He had been attending our new church plant for about 8 weeks and hearing about the good news of following Jesus.
I and others had been praying for him regularly for weeks.
The Holy Spirit had been weaving these influences and stories together to a climatic moment. I was only a bit part, one player, one actor in the story that God wrote in this man.
The Karios Moment
As he told me of the restless and yearning, I recognized the working of the Holy Spirit.
I call this moment a Kairos moment, a moment where God is ready to act and do something in our reality.
I experienced this as
- an intellectual puzzle solver noting the details.
- a calm assurance that today was his day of surrender.
- a burning inside my heart that this man wanted to start following Jesus
One skill we can grow in our personal evangelism is recognizing those God given moments.
When we see these moments, evangelism is as ordinary as breathing.
The step of obedience
Kairos moments are those moments when God calls us to cooperate with Him in the work that He is doing. That is often expressed in a burning invitation to do some kind of action on our part: speak a word, offer to pray, share a word of knowledge.
In personal evangelism, the karios moment might occur where the person will take a giant step forward in their quest to find faith.
Other times, it’ll be at that moment when a person is ready to surrender their life to the Lord.
In this case, I felt led to share a few scriptures on how Jesus is the way to know the Father and then ask him what keeps him from honestly deciding to follow Jesus.
That question was easy to ask.
The conversation was normal and relaxed.
He looked at me and said: “Nothing. How do I start?”
I shared, “One way people express this decision is to offer themselves to Jesus as an act of surrender and invite Christ to take ownership of their life. Would you like to do that now with me, or later?”
“Now is as good a time as any,” he replied.
With that, we prayed together as my friend offered his life to the Lord.
In the sovereignty of God, this man had been prepared ahead of time for this night.
In the sovereignty of God, I got to play a part in this man’s coming to faith.
Let me ask you this?
- Can you trust the sovereignty of God to use you?
- Can you trust the sovereignty of God to invite you to cooperate with His working?