So sharing your faith with others is a challenge for you – well, get it line. It’s something many struggle with. But it’s important to get at the heart of why we don’t do it more readily. Perhaps it’s a matter of my devotion to Jesus. “Do you love me?” Jesus asks us, because we talk about the things we love.
It’s possible that if you only kinda, sorta love to tell the story, that there is another problem. Maybe the question Jesus would ask you today is “Do you believe in me enough?” In other words, it could be a question of my faith in Jesus.
Of all the jobs I’ve had in my life, the one where I was a complete and utter failure was selling cookware one summer in college for the West Bend Company. And not just any old pots and pans, you know. In fact, they drilled it into us – do not refer to these as pots and pans. We’re talking $300-400 dollar sets of premium Lifetime cookware, in which can cook your vegetables without water, thus preserving all the vitamins in them, and can sauté a boneless chicken breast in less than ten minutes, and if you make an order with me today, I’ll throw in not 4 place-settings, not 6, but 8 (insert exclamation point here) place settings of bone china or elegant stoneware, absolutely free.
I had everything going for me. I could speak well enough. I had no trouble memorizing the speel. I wasn’t afraid to knock on a stranger’s door. I had a winsome smile, and don’t forget – I’m from Iowa. They don’t grow up from much better stock than that. And best of all, my market as a cookware salesmen was young, single women. This job couldn’t have been designed for me any better.
But I absolutely bombed. I fell so hard on my face, I pushed my nose out the other side of my head. You want to know why? I did not believe in the product. I could not bring myself to see how cookware could cost so much money, and I could not believe how many foolish women there were out there ready to shell out that kind of money for – I can’t help myself – pots and pans.
To sell the product you must believe in it. Of course this principle holds true when we’re talking about sharing our faith with others. And for some Christians, this is the problem. Their faith is weak. Doubts still nag them. How can you go out there and tell others about Jesus if you’re still not convinced that it’s all true?
Peter for all his bravado did not jump into this Jesus thing with both feet right off the bat. Unlike his brother Andrew who met Jesus once and was like, “Peter, come and meet this guy. We’ve found the Messiah!” Peter was like, “Yah shore, ya betcha Andrew, shore ya have.” (Peter was a Swedish fisherman.)
Peter wasn’t born yesterday. He’d been around the world once or twice (at least across the Sea of Galilee.) He saw holy men and Messiahs come and go. So Peter’s faith grew incrementally, over time, as he listened to Jesus teach, as he watched Jesus in action, his belief in Jesus gestated in the womb of his heart. And then came the day when Peter’s faith was born.
If you saw the new movie, “The Case For Christ”, that’s how it was for Lee Strobel. With every journalistic bone in his body, he tried to prove his wife’s newfound faith a sham. And couldn’t do it. Staring down the wall of evidence after months of investigative work, his objections all crumbled. He believed.
One day Jesus asked the disciples, “Who do you say that I am?” And in that moment, Peter determined that he had seen enough and heard enough, and he jumped to his feet and declared, “You are the Messiah, the son of the living God!” He chose to dismiss his doubts and declare his belief once and for all.
And from then on out, his belief protected him. In days to come, Jesus’ teachings became more controversial and challenging, and his popularity began to wane. When the crowds began to thin out, Jesus turned to the disciples and asked, “Are you also going to leave me?” It was Peter who looked at Jesus and said, “Lord, where would we go? You have the words of eternal life. And we have believed, and have come to know, that you are the Holy One of God.”
That’s the power of faith. It gives you the passion to say, “I love to tell the story.” Run a diagnostic on your belief today. Is there anything more you need to hear or learn before you accept Jesus finally and fully as the Lord of your life? It’s time to stop wavering. Hem and haw no more. Fall down and worship him. Then go tell others to do so also.
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