Most of us in the Church have been trained well beyond our obedience. So when it comes to telling others about Jesus, what are we so afraid of? We know about the Power Band bracelets with colored beads that symbolize a different step in the gospel. WeΓÇÖve heard a version of ΓÇ£The Romans RoadΓÇ¥ or some other witnessing tool. But IΓÇÖm not sure we all truly understand how God saves people and if we are enough to help Him.
I can say I believe salvation is all of God, but if that were my belief IΓÇÖd have no problem sharing my faith. Somewhere between my brain and my heart are some atheistic tendencies. I once heard Pastor Johnny Hunt of First Baptist Church of Woodstock (Georgia) say, ΓÇ£In many areas of our lives we are practical atheists.ΓÇ¥ I tell students all the time, ΓÇ£You can say what you think, but youΓÇÖll live what you believe.ΓÇ¥
Here is a crucial point to work into our hearts and minds: We cannot save anybody.
When I share Jesus, most likely all IΓÇÖm doing is watering a seed someone else planted, and God does the saving. (1 Corinthians 3:7). IΓÇÖve never saved anyone in my life. I cannot look at a witnessing opportunity and consider myself the person who is going to make or break this eternal moment. I am charged only with loving them like Jesus. God does the heavy lifting. ThatΓÇÖs what my braintells me and what Scripturetells me.
Yet my life tells me I obviously donΓÇÖt believe that. Instead, I fear I will say or do something that wonΓÇÖt be good enough or strong enough or convincing enough, which is a scary thoughtΓÇöto think I can convince somebody. The consistent evidence suggests that I believe IΓÇÖm going to do something wrong or prompt too many difficult questions. I think IΓÇÖm not ready. Consequently, I hold back and donΓÇÖt share. So that means I donΓÇÖt believe what I say. For many of us, it is a source of constant spiritual friction.
It often boils down to pride rooted in the sobering reality that I probably have not lived for Christ in front of this person. My fear is that what I share will sound so different from my normal behavior and attitude that theyΓÇÖre going to look at me and laugh because I havenΓÇÖt lived the eternal life IΓÇÖm now professing.
All of these shortcomingsΓÇöa misunderstanding of Scripture, a fear of rejection, and prideΓÇöare steeped in some form of fear, which isnΓÇÖt from God anyway.
To fear sharing your faith is to misunderstand the gospel, our role, and GodΓÇÖs role. God is love, and perfect love cast out fearΓÇöso we can speak the words of life with GodΓÇÖs fire in our eyes. And just love ΓÇÿem like Jesus.