Saturday, September 17, 2011


Our church helped in putting on a 3-on-3 basketball tournament today for an organization called National Hoops. The basic idea is that they go out to public school and parks and invite people to come play in this tournament and the church provides lunch and help with setting everything up. They present the gospel during the lunch period--the whole point of this basketball ministry. God worked in the hearts of many young men today in drawing them to Himself. I had the privilege of praying with a couple of these young men. It was such an incredible joy and blessing being used by the Lord to help these young men understand the gospel. It was the Holy Spirit that opened their eyes to understand it and caused them to respond to the message by placing their faith in Christ. It was neat hearing them talking afterwards when they were talking amongst each other and wondering why their other friend hadn't turned to faith in Christ. Perhaps the Lord will use these young men to draw many more to Himself.

While it was an incredible joy to witness these young men coming to Christ, I was very much convicted by my lack of boldness in sharing the gospel. God brought about half of these unsaved young men to Himself through someone simply having the boldness to share the gospel with them in a clear manner. I may not have the gift of evangelism, but that has nothing to do with whether to not the call to make disciples of all nations applies to me. It does.

I am reminded of Paul's encouragement and prayer request at the end of Ephesians:
Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might. Put on the full armor of God, so that you will be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore, take up the full armor of God, so that you will be able to resist in the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm. Stand firm therefore, having girded your loins with truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; in addition to all, taking up the shield of faith with which you will be able to extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. With all prayer and petition pray at all times in the Spirit, and with this in view, be on the alert with all perseverance and petition for all the saints, and pray on my behalf, that utterance may be given to me in the opening of my mouth, to make known with boldness the mystery of the gospel, for which I am an ambassador in chains; that in proclaiming it I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak.
Paul asks them to pray that God would give him boldness to make the gospel known. I need the very same thing. The stakes of eternal life or death are infinitely high in comparison to my comfort. I need boldness. I know I must speak as the Spirit leads, but I fear that I have been suppressing His lead in the area of sharing the gospel far too much. God, give me boldness for Your glory.

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