“Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ’s stead, be ye reconciled to God.” (2 Corinthians 5:20)
“We are fools for Christ’s sake.” (1 Corinthians 4:10a)
Crouched down low at the shelf of vitamins, I began looking at the children’s multivitamins that the pharmacist had directed me to. As the pharmacist began to walk away, something in my spirit said, “This man needs to know Christ!” As a kind of ‘knee jerk’ reaction, I sprang up to my feet, blurting out, “Oh, there’s something I forgot to tell you …” The man paused and waited for me to continue my thought. In my heart, I wanted to pound the man, as though to say, “Do you know Christ!!!?” but the words would not come! (Thank God!) The Lord evidently restrained me from saying them.
Thinking of another way to reach out to this man, I immediately checked my inside coat pocket because that is where I normally kept my “pile” of evangelistic tracts. However, when I began to reach in to it, to my utter surprise, I discovered that there were none! (Empty!?!?!?) Thinking of “what next” to say to the man, all I could mutter … utter … sputter … feeling both ashamed and embarrassed at my lack of preparedness, were the words, “I’m a Christian, and I had wanted to give you a Christian pamphlet to read, but … ah … I can see that I don’t have any more!!!”
Oh, if only I had taken up Ray Comfort’s pledge and offered to give US$1000.00 to anyone who could find me without an evangelistic tract, I would have been much more diligent! But such was not the case, and today, of all days, I was without a tract! You could almost “feel” the Lord telling me, “So … no tract, huh? That’ll teach you to be more prepared next time I ask you to do something!!!” And indeed, I had failed miserably.
Thankfully, however, all was not lost. I still had tracts in the car! (My backup supply, in case anything ever went wrong!) After I had completed my purchase, I went back to the car and got a tract from there and indeed the Lord confirmed to me in my spirit, “Yes, go back and give it to him. It’s for him!” even though Satan would have wanted me to reason, “Well, that’s a done deal, the past is the past, and move on and go reach out to another person but NOT THIS MAN!” In obedience, of course, I did not consider that second thought (Thank-God!). I had perfect peace. This was from the Lord and there was no mistake about it! On with the work of the Lord!
Handing the man the tract, and having glanced at the address on the back of it (for that is evidently the very *first* thing that he did when I handed it to him), he then immediately looked up at me and said, “So, you’re from the Met?” (Metropolitan Bible Church)
I responded, “Yes, I am.”
He said to me, “I have gone there from time-to-time.”
Ah, … the man *knew* and had even *visited* the church. It was one of literally hundreds of churches in the area. The title on the tract that I gave this man was, “In Search of Truth” (by Josh McDowell, a excellent author and defender of Christianity who has also written, “More than a carpenter,” “Evidence that Demands a Verdict”, and other fine books that you can obtain at your nearest Christian bookstore). Yes, the title was relevant, for the man had been searching, but evidently, had not ‘found’ what he was looking for — yet. For the man did not say to me, “I go there regularly,” or, “That is my church,” or, “Yes, I am a Christian, too,” but only, “I have gone there from time-to-time.” What was the Lord saying in all of this? I believe the Lord’s message to this man was simply this: “You have started to do a good thing. Keep doing it! Don’t stop now!”
As though being God’s spokesman (which Christians are, since we are called, “ambassadors for Christ”) God was able to use me at that precise time to deliver what I believe to have been God’s “message” to him, not only by way of the tract, but by way of a simple gesture on my part, inasmuch as I felt led to say, “Maybe I’ll see you there one day!”
At that, we parted and I knew then that I had indeed “heard correctly” from the Lord, about reaching out to this searching soul. You know, sometimes the confirmation that we have done “what was right” comes after we do it, and not before! That, really, is what faith is all about — risk-taking. When we do that, and when we have made Jesus Christ Lord and Savior of our life, sure, we might ‘look like a fool’ from time to time (or even a lot), but in the end, it will have been worthwhile, as people say to us, “THANK-YOU for taking the risk of being “God’s fool” because I am now blessed by it!