Several months ago Walt gave me Awakening to God, strongly encouraging me to read it. Now I have finally finished.
Written by the executive director of Alpha USA, Gerard Long shares part of his own journey to knowing God more intimately. Most importantly he challenged me in the area of evangelism – truly having a heart and passion for those around me to know Christ. He writes
Regardless of our location or vocation, God desires for us to go into all the world for the purpose of spreading the gospel. So even if the extent of our going is simply to reach our families, neighbors, friends and coworkers, we’re following our mission as long as we ‘have the mind of Christ’ to seek and to save the lost and to bring the good news of salvation to everyone in our midst. And as we keep our minds focused on this goal, we become more flexible and available for God to send or redirect us where he wants us to go. (page 29)
Gerard shares many stories of how people have come to Christ through different avenues of witnessing – sometimes through friendship, inviting others to church. Sometimes through the vulnerability of our own brokenness as we minster to others out of our own personal tragedy, sharing with the broken world what God has done for us.
God wants to use us to reach the world. Sometimes we can try to turn it into a complicated formula of evangelism but ‘the best way we can prepare ourselves to “go into all the world” is by spending as much time as we can in the presence of God.’ (p31)
How encouraging to know that it isn’t our strength that turns the hearts and minds of others to Christ, but if we abide in the presence of God, praying continually for Him to open doors, provide opportunities and speak to people’s hearts He will use us as witnesses of His kingdom.