When Jesus told His disciples to go into the whole world to make disciples of all nations; teach them about Christ, teach them the Word of God, He didn’t say, You have been with Me for three years, have seen Me evangelize and disciple people, so hit the streets and start doing the same thing. No! Jesus instructed them to tarry in the city of Jerusalem until they are endued with power from on high (Luke 24:29). We can’t do the work of evangelism by our own power, might and wisdom (Zechariah 4:6). We need the help, gifts, ability, strength, direction and strategy which the Holy Spirit is ready to equip us with. Acts 1:8 tells us that when the Holy Spirit comes on us we will receive power to witness for Christ. The Holy Spirit supplies all we need for the work of evangelism.
The Holy Spirit creates and arranges opportunities for evangelism. In Acts 16:6-10, Paul planned to go and preach the Word of God in Asia, but the Holy Spirit didn’t allow Paul do this. Paul tried to enter Bithynia still for the good purpose of preaching the word of God, but the Holy Spirit blocked him from doing this. Instead, Paul had a vision of a man in Macedonia pleading to him to come and help him. By this vision, Paul knew that an opening, an opportunity, a door had been opened for him in Macedonia to preach there.
For each of us, the Holy Spirit will create different opportunities for us to do the work of evangelism. Not everyone will receive a vision from God to go to some town or city, like it happened to Paul. Your own opportunity may come like the slave girl, who her master Naaman had a serious health problem that needed divine intervention (2 Kings 5:1-3). Your boss who hasn’t surrendered to Jesus, may be going through a health, marital or financial issue. This presents a perfect opportunity for you to tell your boss about your God, to encourage him or her that God can intervene and turn the situation around. It is a time and season for you to invite your boss to a Church service or program for God to touch your boss and address what he or she is presently going through.
For some other people, your opportunity may come like it did for Philip in Acts 8:26-39 where by divine arrangement, Philip was put on the same road with an Ethiopian eunuch who needed to hear about God. The Holy Spirit will arrange for you to be on the same road, same bus, same class, same aircraft, same hotel, or same shop with someone who needs to hear about God. Another person’s opportunity may come like that of the Good Samaritan (Luke 10:25-37). On your way to church, right at the middle of the street will be someone who has been attacked by armed robbers or knocked down by a car and needs urgent help and attention. Your church picking a day for everyone to go out for evangelism is also an opportunity that has been created for you.
What do we do when these opportunities come our way? Acts 16:10 tells us that as soon as Paul saw this vision of a man in Macedonia, he left immediately without any delay for Macedonia. He seized the opportunity. Ephesians 5:15-17, tells us that when opportunities come knocking, we must make the best use of these opportunities. Especially now that the devil knows his time is short and he is doing everything possible to keep people away from God and the Kingdom of God (Revelation 12:12).
Opportunities utilized lead to the opening of a great and effective door to impact lives for God (I Corinthians 16:9). The more we make use of these opportunities for evangelism the Holy Spirit creates for us, the more we realize the great and effective door God has opened for us to impact lives for the kingdom, and the more we understand the places and people God has destined us to reach out to. Paul got to understand that a great and effective door to preach to the gentiles and impact their lives had been opened for him (Galatians 1:15-16, Romans 15:18-20).
A great and effective door may be opened for you through music, through drama, through writing, through intercessory prayers, through teaching, preaching or through giving. Your own ‘Macedonia’ may be in the prison, in the hospital, in government, or in schools. It could be on that street where drug addicts reside, or it could be on social media. Your own ‘man of Macedonia’ pleading on you to come over to ‘Macedonia’ to help them may be children, young adults, singles, widows, business men and women, prostitutes, homeless and destitute people, or the elderly.
A great Kingdom assignment has been entrusted into our hands, and opportunities abound each day for us to fulfil this assignment. By tapping into these opportunities, we bring pleasure to God who desires all men to be saved and come to the knowledge of the truth (1 Timothy 2:4).
PHOTO CREDIT: Pixabay