I have never intentionally put myself about non-believers. Ever. Unless you count intentionally going to McDonald's instead of Chick-fil-A.. But when I look back at my life, unless I was on a mission trip [which youth really go on mission trips to sit in the back of the bus with a cute boy you never talk to and try to get the trucker passing by to honk/toot/pull his horn], I never went out of my way to interact with someone who didn't know my Lord.
I can look back on my time in college and see how strongly God was trying to direct me to those who needed Him most. I think about that saying "Healthy people don't need doctor's. Sick people do." Well, I was just hanging out with all the healthy people of the world. What a joke.
I vividly remember having a conversation with one of the most intentional people I know, Christina Keaster [soon to be Williams. Bah!!] where she said she had joined an intermural team of girls she didn't know...so she could try to witness to them. Are you kidding me!? She just rocked my world. [And can we note that when she said "witness to them" she didn't mean asking them "If you were to get in your car tonight and get in a wreck and die, do you know without a doubt you'd be in Heaven? Would you like to be certain of that? PUKE. She meant she wanted to build relationships with these girls. Love them like Christ loves. And allow the Holy Spirit to guide the rest.] I know it took effort to get to that point in her life, but to then BE THERE and see how much of her life was wrapped around His life...I admire so much about her heart and desire to be Jesus to the world.
She was meeting people where they were. On the intermural field.
I am walking into an environment where God is not welcomed. Unfortunately, most of the people I encounter aren't open to the idea of God, especially not a conversation about Him. At least right now. But I refuse to believe that will remain the case. I am trying to embody the saying "Preach the Gospel always. If necessary, use words."
Christ walks into work with me everyday. I'm truly learning what Christina learned years ago. And I couldn't be more excited. Some days I'm terrified to get into any conversation with my co-workers out of fear that they'll ask if I drink or do drugs...and what they'll say when I say no. No one is physically there to support me.
But bump that, man. When did I start needing anything other than Christ and Christ ALONE?
I realize the odds of me starting to drink heavily and do drugs don't seem very high. But can I tell you something? Some days...it's the most appealing thing in the world. Satan, the little wiener, has mastered making the most disgusting things seem like the bees knees. Again I say, BUMP THAT.
It might not always be the most extreme struggle. But getting sucked into a negative attitude or mouthing about frustrating customers can hurt my witness just as much as smoking a joint with them after work. I need to be strong. I don't have a choice. I gave away my horrible decision making ability to a God who made the best decision ever:
To create me out of love before
I ever loved Him.
I hope you are encouraged to intentionally put yourself around non-believers and preach the Gospel. And also, realize how important it is to spend time with believers who encourage you and hold you accountable. Not to mention daily walking into the presence of the God who gave you life and praising, loving, thanking, worshiping, learning, asking, and simply.....being with Him.
Abba, I'm crazy about you and I ask you to use Your words through me to grow the Kingdom. I love everything about you. And am amazed you allowed me to know Your name. Thank you....