And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”
Matthew 28:18-20 ESV
The call to make disciples of all nations is given to you and to me – to all believers in Jesus Christ. Dictionary.com defines “disciple” as a follower or student of a teacher, leader, or philosopher. We aren’t to go and “convert” people to Christianity. That’s religion. We are to walk alongside others and encourage them to become followers of Jesus Christ. We are to encourage our brothers and sisters to grow in Christlikeness.
If there is one regret I have, it is not being a better witness for Jesus during the time that He has given me. It’s not that I didn’t *want* to necessarily, but that I didn’t know *how* to. As an introvert with mild social anxiety, the idea of “witnessing” was very overwhelming. Maybe there are others who feel the same way.
It helped me to understand that the results are all up to God. My job is to plant seeds and to water sprouts. It’s God alone who gives the increase. That made it easier for me to throw out seeds of the gospel here and there, and not worry about what happened next.
For when one says, “I follow Paul,” and another, “I follow Apollos,” are you not being merely human? What then is Apollos? What is Paul? Servants through whom you believed, as the Lord assigned to each. I planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the growth. So neither he who plants nor he who waters is anything, but only God who gives the growth. He who plants and he who waters are one, and each will receive his wages according to his labor. For we are God’s fellow workers. You are God’s field, God’s building.
1 Corinthians 3:4-9 ESV
Primarily, you are able to influence those in your unique vicinity. Your reach includes the physical (coworkers, family, friends), as well as online (facebook, instagram, twitter, youtube). You are in a position to reach people that no one else may have access to in the way you do. Reaching out to God for salvation, and growing in Christ, are processes that for some people are quite drawn out. Think about how you can nudge someone just a little step closer to God. Think about the people in your life and the resources you have available to you. Ask God for ideas of how to spread His Word.
Here are the introvert-friendly ideas I have collected:
- Think about your testimony. How did you come to Christ? How have you grown in Christ? Understanding this will help you relate to how others will come to Christ and grow in Him. It will also help you be ready when opportunities present.
- Look for Opportunity. If you’re brave, try offering to pray for a stranger in distress. If you’re even braver, try offering to pray for someone you know in distress.
- Create Opportunity. Sometimes with a little creative thinking, you can steer conversations towards the gospel.
- Help Someone. One idea includes putting together a little care package purse for a homeless person – granola bar, juice box, chapstick, socks, and a pocket New Testament.
- Social Media. There are MANY opportunities in Facebook groups (and the like) to point others to Christ and towards sound doctrine. Be patient, be loving, be gentle.
- Start a Blog. Several popular choices are wordpress.com and blogger.com, or the Page feature on Facebook. What could you write about that other people could relate to? Crafting? Parenting? Sports? Health Issues? Writing about what you are interested in, or what you have experienced, is one thing. It can have mental health benefits, but it might be meaningless from an eternal perspective if you don’t point to Christ somehow through it. How you do so is up to you, but try to write about things that create an opportunity to share the gospel.
- Random Gospel Mailouts. A friend told me about this one just recently and it has been so much fun! First, I ordered some tracts. I order from christianbook.com, but if you go HERE you can search through the tracts and read their insides before ordering. I like Max Lucado’s “Grace” the best, personally. Then, I printed out a letter to include with the tract. My letter is HERE if you want to copy it. I also had some wooden crosses, cross stickers, and cross bookmarks I randomly included. I suggested finding an Alliance or Baptist church on the back of the tract. Many denominations would be fine here but I wanted to point them towards something evangelical. Then – the fun part – I went to whitepages.com and asked God to help me think of last names, then just typed in some last names and chose people to address the letters to. I prayed over the letters as I mailed them. Just think – if each of us did one letter a day, we could blanket the country with exposure to the gospel!
- Random Gospel Emails. Similar to the idea in #3 but send the letter and links to the gospel message via email. I choose gmail.com and hotmail.com and just start making up addresses to send to. i.e. firstname.lastname@example.org. Think about if you try to sign up for a new address and the kind of gymnastics you have to perform to find a unique user ID, then try to guess what someone may have created. I have about 25% bounce back to me, but that means 75% are going through! Even if only one gets read, that’s a potential heart for ETERNITY!!!
- Wear the Gospel. Whether this means a t-shirt, a cross, or a Bible verse tattoo’d on your arm, people will notice. I got a friend to make me one of these:
- Be a Great Ambassador. Once people know you’re a Christian, they watch you. Are you different than the world around you?
- Give Away Your Stuff. Utilize local swap/buy sites such as Craigslist and Kijiji to give away your extra possessions. I purchased cheap New Testaments ($1 each from Christianbook.com) to give away with each item. I include the following in the description: Comes with a brand new free bible too 🙂 Why free, you wonder? I believe Jesus is coming back soon. I have been challenged that if I believe in God and in His signs, that I should warn others. It is better to warn others and be wrong, than to hold a secret and have others suffer because of my silence. Thus, I am giving away my possessions in the hopes that I might reach even just one person. God is extending His hand to you, today. Will you take it?
In letters, on tracts, in books, I also include a link to the website http://www.escapeallthesethings.wordpress.com. This website details the pretribulation view of what is coming upon the world, and includes a clear presentation to the gospel as well as links to further gospel resources.
Feel free to use or modify any of my ideas as you like. We are in this together, as part of the body of Christ!
I highly recommend the book A Life That Matters by Ron Hutchcraft to inspire you to make the most difference possible with the rest of your life!