Know Your Assignment

And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers,  12 for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ.

Ephesians 4:11

[6] I’ve shared before that God called me into the ministry of evangelism. He made it evident particularly on my mission trip to Russia when I could feel His Holy Spirit inspiring me as I talked with people. He gave me courage, and wisdom to say things I didn’t even know I would say. He gave me a deep love in my heart for the people I talked with, and I knew it was Him supernaturally revealing His own love through me.

So this is my ministry, and before you feel intimidated, I want you to know it is quite a limited ministry. What I mean is, I am not called to disciple—I don’t hand out my contact info. I don’t take people under my wing. I don’t have the gift of helps, or service, or encouragement, or hospitality or greeting people as they come in, or letting them cry on my shoulder. I don’t make food for the sick, or clean their house, or watch their kids, or run their errands. I’m never on-call to the lost souls I’ve met, I don’t host people, I don’t cook for events, and I don’t do women’s ministry.

I imagine about now, you realize that you do some of those things. In fact you like to. I bet some of those things are so easy for you that you don’t think they have much value. Well they do. And to me, certainly, they do because all those things freak me out. I am so glad to direct sombody to one of you—so relieved. It’s simply not my gift.

But the thing is, I DO many of those things in the course of witnessing. In that moment, I wash wounds, I give clothes, I offer food, I listen to their painful stories, I pray for them and offer help. But that moment passes.

The same goes for you. Your calling may not be an evangelist, but God will use your unique gift to open the door of the gospel with people–in due season. You just need to know your thing, and be faithful to it. Polish it. Be ready to do it, because that is your offering of love on God’s behalf. And when you do this, they will ask you why. They will want what you have. You must be prepared to tell them, and you must give them Jesus.

And when you know what your thing is, be prepared with your toolkit. Keep things ready to bless others with.

I always keep in my car (and in my witnessing bag) two books, ready to give away. I buy them cheap, and in bulk. The one book is More Than a Carpenter by Josh McDowell. I give this to anyone who claims to be a seeker of truth, and is willing to read about the evidence for Jesus’s life and claims. The other one is The Hiding Place by Corrie Ten Boom, which I give to Christians to encourage their faith.

You might have read a book that you think can really help others—especially in the area of your ministry (mom’s, abuse victims, teens, addicts, lonely people, single, angry, failing faith, debt . . .). Plan ahead and use some of your God money to have little blessings on hand to enhance your ministry. You’d be surprised how easy it is to bridge the gap with coworkers, family, and most of all strangers, when you have some connecting point like a book to show God’s unique love and care for them as an individual. I always tell people:

“This is no accident. God wanted you to have this, and to know how much He loves you. There’s no other way to explain how we happened to meet, and I happened to have this to give you. You need to know how special you are to God, and that He has a special plan for your life.”

Then I see where that goes, or I let God take it from there.

Pray about the thing that drives your motor—your connection point with people. Then ask God to show you how to be ready. It’s such an exciting moment when you get to see how He will use it. He’ll send people your way as soon as you let Him know you are willing. And the best part is, it’s actually easy—because you’re just doing what comes naturally to you.

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