I remember it like it was yesterday. My heart was pounding as I saw Katie sit down near me in the dining hall. I could feel the Lord nudging me to go share with her.
It was my freshman year in college and I had just returned from spending spring break in Daytona beach, FL. I had gone to a conference for college students, organized by the ministry cru. During that week we studied the Bible and learned how to talk to others about Jesus. We had even spent a few afternoons on the beach talking with strangers about God’s love for them and His desire to have a relationship with them.
Back now in frigid Ohio, those experiences and convictions held strong. God gave me the strength to fight through the dozen excuses that vied for my attention as I put down my book and approached Katie, a girl who lived on my floor in our dorm. I asked her how her spring break was and when she reciprocated the question, I took a deep breath and began to share. I shared about the conference and that we learned about Jesus and had the opportunity to talk with others about His love for them and that He had a wonderful plan for their lives. I asked if she wanted me to share more with her and then she said it…”no.”
My heart still pounding, I smiled and said “ok. Have a great day.” I went back to my table and sat down, hands shaking. That was it. The worst had just happened and I was still ok. I had responded to God’s nudging on my heart to just open my mouth and share…and my worst nightmare had come true…I had been rejected…but I was ok. The rest was in God’s hands.
That single act of obedience would prove to be a marker that I have returned to again and again in my personal walk with Jesus. The Lord has continued to use those terrifying moments to remind me that He is always with me and sharing my faith with others is simply explaining what He has done.
“And you will say in that day: ‘Give thanks to the Lord, call upon his name, make known his deeds among the peoples, proclaim that his name is exalted.’” -Isaiah 12:4
When we feel God’s nudge on our hearts to go speak to the Katie’s in our life, my prayer is that we remember. We remember His faithfulness in the past, and we trust His faithfulness both now and in the future. We remember that sharing our faith is sharing His story of love, sacrifice, redemption and hope. And we remember to daily pursue an eternal perspective…knowing in the end all that will last and matter is what we did for His kingdom.
We don’t know how they will respond, that’s not our responsibility. But we are called to be a light to others,
“…for at one time you were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of the light…” –Ephesians 5:8.
We are called to open up our mouths when God gives us an opportunity. I’m not saying it isn’t scary or awkward, but I am saying it’s worth it. It’s worth it for your own relationship with God to grow, and it’s worth it to share God’s saving grace with another.
Remember, there was a time someone shared God’s love with you. It’s worth it.