Throughout my childhood, I was the most introverted person you would come across. Sometime in my mid-20s, I suddenly couldn’t help talking to people, even complete strangers. I would engage people in whatever topic(s) they were interested in, whatever they threw at me. But, as a believer since my early-30s, I found myself incredibly shy about the one thing which should be the most important thing in the world, in eternity: The good news of our salvation.
I am unable. I am fearful. I am inadequate. … I don’t know enough. What would people think? These are just some of the excuses. While they may not come up consciously, they have certainly been subconscious justifications for not bringing this up.
And yet, Scripture shows us exactly what a correct response should be and the results. There are two examples in a very narrow time-frame.
When Jesus encountered the Samaritan woman (John 4:1-30), her immediate response to belief was to go to her town and tell of Him. The result? “Many of the Samaritans from that town believed in Him because of the woman’s testimony” (John 4:39).
Just a few days later, when Jesus healed the son of a Cana official, the son was healed at the moment of the official’s belief in Him (John 4:43-54). When the words “So he and his whole household believed” were written, it is because the official told his whole household.
What these verses have taught me is that:
(1) when you have come to the knowledge of saving faith and have believed in Jesus’s saving work on the cross providing you eternal life, you are not to keep it to yourself; and
(2) when it comes to who you share it with, it is not within your power to decide whether a person or people is ripe or ready to hear of Jesus.
The Samaritans were a tribe of Jews that were outcasts and ostracized. They were not supposed to be reachable. And yet, look at the belief of the Samaritan woman and then the cascading effects of her testimony. There is no one whom God has not deemed reachable who shall not be reached.
So, why have I not told others—everyone—of the good news that I have come to know? Do I believe it enough? If the answer is “yes,” then I am to go and speak of Him who has saved me. It is not for me to worry about the results. But God …
If you are similarly challenged, there will be an ACE class coming up (Nov 24): Daniel Son will be sharing his experience from sifting week, of how to reach out to those who are un-reached but within our midst. Maybe you will share with those within your midst?
Tony Lim, his wife and 2 (soon-to-be 3) children have considered GRC family since 2009. He sometimes roams the GRC hallways as Communication Director.