I have known Steve F for around 16 years. I first knew him when he was dead in sin, but now he is alive in Christ Jesus. Not only is he alive in Christ, he makes it his aim to tell others the Good News! It was a joy to have him co-labour with us a few weeks back. In this post, Steve shares about the nature of fruit in evangelism.
Hungry for fruit
A few weeks ago I had the privilege to join six other Christian brothers at the Shops in Don Mills to spread the good news of God. One thing that I was hungry for that day was to see some fruit, so we prayed about it before we went out. I was paired up with Joe and the first person that we approached was a man that appeared to be in his mid 30’s (he was hovering over a valet parking sign). After sparking up a conversation about the store that was offering valet parking, we told him what we were doing.
Alvin was the man’s name and he’s from the Philippines. After talking with him for 15 minutes about various things from the Bible Joe and I found ourselves really encouraged, for Alvin was very thankful that we stopped to talk to him about eternal things. We ended up giving him the booklet, “The Essential Jesus,” which is basically the gospel of Luke. After giving him the book he again thanked us both as he started to leaf through it. As we walked away I found myself filled with joy for it seemed as though this man understood (in a small way) the importance of being in a right relationship with the Creator….but yet it was still short of the fruit that I wanted to see that day.
Planting, watering and watching God give growth
After reflecting on the conversation with Alvin, I started to think about some passages in Mark’s Gospel that I had previously been pondering. In Mark 10, after Jesus tells the rich man to sell all of his goods and follow him, the man leaves disheartened because he had much wealth. Jesus then tells his disciples how difficult it will be for the rich to enter the Kingdom of God, which in turn threw the disciples for a loop. They thought that those with worldly treasure were favoured by God. They responded by saying, “then who can be saved?” Jesus said, “With man it is impossible, but not with God. For all things are possible with God.” This was a comforting thought that day, knowing that it’s not up to Joe and I to give a complete storyline of the Bible followed by a smooth and graceful transition to the gospel message … and if we did that well enough, we would walk away with a conversion in our back pocket. The Bible doesn’t teach that that’s how the lost are saved. As Christians we plant and water but it is God who gives the growth and that growth will come at the right time.
Some signs of fruit?
An hour after talking to Alvin, a couple of my friends mentioned that a Filipino man in his 30’s was leaning up against a wall, reading the “Essential Jesus”! Was I ever joyful for that!