Sunday, May 16, 2010

A New Thought, or a Lazy/Frightened One?

I am the personality such that anything that looks remotely lazy I rise up against and will often seek an opposite solution to. But unfortunately I seem to have the same laziness/fear about openly sharing my faith. This may come as a surprise to some of you, but to those who know me well, probably not...

I have a fear about sharing the Gospel. There, I've said it and admitted it! Five years ago I wouldn't have done that :)

No really though--let's get serious. I know I am not the only Christian with this fear, yet it runs so strangely with me to not attack this (perhaps lazy?) fear/dislike of not wanting to get caught up in people's problems and conflicts. I usually like to confront my petty fears and go directly against them in order to counter them--that is why I took public speaking!! *gulp* But I must admit that in this area I have made little progress, always pushing it to the back of my mind. Sure I try and be a light wherever I go etc, but sharing the Gospel with the person next to me on the plane, or with the cashier, or whoever I come in contact with, has never been a natural thing for me, and honestly my heart beats quickly whenever I even consider it. But I have done little about it, allowing the business of changing my fear to be pushed back and back by life.

Well, I had a thought today. I am definitely not accepting it as THE ONLY truth. Let me say that I do know it's within every Christian's duty to be ready to answer for the hope that is within him or her, and I am not trying to say here that this is no longer necessary, by any means.

Today the pastor spoke on Joseph and his resistance to Potipher's wife in Egypt. And something got my attention: that Joseph, and now that I think about it, many if not all of the the historical Biblical characters, never actually come out in the stories and share the Gospel straight up with whoever the authority or peer is in their life. I do believe Paul does with the Romans who are holding him captive, and again I am by no means saying that sharing the Gospel straight up with people is WRONG. I guess God is showing me perhaps, that sharing the Gospel can be done more ways than out and out words and sentences. It can be a way of life!

Sure I knew this; but to actually realize fully that many of the famous stories between godly men and women, and pagans don't involve an actual sharing of the Gospel (at least, not that we hear in the story), but an actual LIVING OUT of the Gospel, which is SO EFFECTIVE. For example, the Joseph story--Potipher knows that God is with Joseph. The same for Daniel, and I am sure there are others I just can't think of right now :) These men simply lived out their faith unashemedly. We never hear them share the "four spiritual laws" (sorry, couldn't resist *smile) or the steps to salvation. We, along with the authorities and peers of their day, simply see something different and incredible, and credit it to God.

I hope my rambling has made some sort of sense! Let me say in closing that all in all I was encouraged today that while my heart and mind are perhaps too weak and afraid of man to engage every stranger that comes my way, that by my dress, attitude, character, and way of living, I can express something that may make people think to themselves, as they thought of Daniel and Joseph: God is with this man (in my case woman). If I can dare to put myself on the same level of these incredible men, this is my hope and prayer!

Oh may that truth be so! "The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it..."


Joshua Schwisow said...

Good thoughts Katie,

I most certainly agree with what you said. Reading the stories of Daniel, Joseph, and others is so instructive for us. They lived out their faith unashamedly and always glorified God in their various situations.

God has given us different abilities and some are called to share their faith in different ways. I think in whatever situation we should seek to bring glory to God. The end goal is not conversions, rather the end goal is worship and the glory of God through the salvation of sinners. That all people would turn and worship the one true God.

Sometimes we can preach more effectively without words by our actions. Though there is most certainly a place for the preaching of the Word (Rom. 10:14-15).

Katie said...

Thanks Josh for that encouragement... Sometimes I feel like a big chicken, but I know God is perfecting me in my faith :) And it won't always be easy! I hope you're doing well.

a humble servant said...

Hi Big Chicken! ha ha.
Just kidding!
I loved your post!
It reminded me of one of my favorite quotes I heard Chuck Colson share (though I have since heard that it might really have come from St. Francis of Assissi??)



So there you have it.
Thanks for sharing your very profound thoughts!
How did you become such a deep and intuitive thinker??
I guess all those thinking skills books paid off! Smile.
And miss you!

Katie said...

Thanks Mom :) I LOVED thinking skills! Still do *laugh* Love you.