I feel the Lord calling me to move to a new stage of living as his witness. Stage 1 brought radical change into my life as I realised that I have been sent by God into every encounter with every person in every circumstance in every day of my life, to represent Jesus and help people journey closer to him. I began putting on ‘sent glasses’ each day and viewing my time with people through the lens of my sentness. Through the years since I began that journey of sentness, God has opened up many amazing conversations and redemptive relationships.
Lately, however, I have been a frustrated witness. I have lots to share with people about Jesus, but new redemptive relationships are not opening up. God is pushing me to move to Stage 2.
What is Stage 1 and Stage 2 all about?
Today I read Luke 14:12-24, Jesus’ parable of the great banquet. A man threw a great banquet to invite people to “eat bread in the kingdom of God”. He started by inviting his friends, his brothers and sisters, his relatives and his neighbours—all the people he was naturally close to in life. That’s exactly what I have been doing as a witness. That’s Stage 1. In Stage 1, you recognise that you are being sent by God into the lives of the people around you. You see those encounters with different eyes and use those encounters to help people move toward God.
In Jesus’ story, those people the man already spent time with were not interested in coming to the banquet. So he said to his servant, “Go out quickly to the streets and lanes of the city, and bring in the poor and crippled and blind and lame.” Later he added, “Go out to the highways and hedges and compel people to come in, that my house may be filled.” That’s Stage 2 of living as a witness for Jesus!
Stage 1: Openly move toward spiritual conversations and gospel conversations with the people already in your life.
Stage 2: Intentionally go out of your normal setting and find broken people who are seekers, searching for God, and invite them to come to Christ. As the passage says, “invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind.”
What is a setting you could choose to get involved in, that would expose you to broken, needy people who are not concerned with hiding their brokenness and looking like they are all together, people who are desperately and openly in need of God?