“Experience shows that success is due less to ability than zeal. The winner is he who gives himself to his work body and soul.” Charles Buxton
You don’t know what being timid is until you’re facing men in a prison yard trying to tell them about Christ. The first time I did this I nearly froze. I was equipped with a pocket full of candy and a handful of homemade tracks typed on small square cards, as well as the back of bookmarks that said, “God bless you.” I walked “the yard” spreading the gospel of Jesus Christ.
I was so nervous when I began that I fumbled my words. I was only managing to get out a few words, “Jesus saves” or “Jesus loves you.” I passed them a piece of candy each time, like a cup of coffee at an A.A. meeting or a lollipop at the doctor’s office. They were used as a means to welcome the soul into fellowship, or calm the patient. Only I wasn’t trying to heal people. I was attempting to turn them to Him who is able to save their souls from eternity in hell.
These men were eagerly accepting of the candy, but when the track came out things became tense. I would think to myself that these men think the candy is sweet, but oh how much more could they “taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the man who trusts in Him.” (Psalm 34:8)
The tension made me more nervous.
I have been saved for years now, but never had the courage to witness to strangers about Christ and His love for them. What I lacked was a zeal for Christ.
The Virtues Project, an inspirational/motivational organization, defines zeal as “a passion for purpose we deeply value.” They say, “We follow a vision of what is possible with enthusiasm and ardor. When we are zealous we give our all. Zeal is fueled by our belief and faith.”
What had been hindering me from witnessing in my past? Sadly, I was ashamed of the gospel of Christ, although I knew better. (Romans 1:16) Much of our society believes that followers of Christ are crazy, weak, and lame. I allowed these lies to effect my walk. My growth was hindered.
Our Lord Jesus said, “For whoever is ashamed of Me and My words in this adulterous and sinful generation, of him the Son of Man also will be ashamed when He comes in the glory of His Father with the holy angels.” (Mark 8:38)
I don’t want to be ashamed of Christ. He certainly wasn’t ashamed of me when He bore the cross for me. He paid a debt I could not pay. The beautiful thing is we are not indebted to Christ. We have the freedom, the choice, to serve Him and show Him the gratitude we hold for His precious sacrifice.
Christ is meant to be shared.
When I accepted Christ, I accepted the joy of becoming the light in a dark world. (Matthew 5:14)
I will, and I hope you choose to also, “let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven. (Matthew 5:16)
It is never too late.