Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Prioritizing

In an effort to simplify my life and make more time for family and ministry, I have resigned my position as the Central Region Representative to NATCA's National Constitution Committee. Congratulations to Chad Wilson who will be assuming those duties. Since Chad has a May obligation to his Guard unit, I'll still be in Washington DC in May for the pre-Convention meeting. (Guess I'll get to see the Nationals new stadium after all!)

The May meeting will also allow me time to see my brother Steve, and a chance to meet fellow blogger, Bilbo. The resignation will save me a week of leave later in the year and perhaps make time for a mission trip to Mexico this summer. I've already burned seven days of leave and a holiday this year for various evangelism conferences around the state. To date this year I've traveled almost 2000 miles, been at four conferences (preached at two, magic at three), been in eight different churches, booked two revivals, two camps, been called for pulpit supply and turned down three churches due to schedule conflicts. I have been witness to several first-time professions of faith, baptisms, members joining churches and heard some great testimonies. As I think about all of the things that God has brought and continues to bring to my life, most of what I do on my own seems pretty insignificant.

I am becoming more committed to sharing the Gospel Story of Salvation in Jesus. I'm not committed to becoming more judgmental, I just want to tell the story. Everybody gets to make their own choice. (uh-oh, did I just say I was pro-choice?) I recently had a conversation with a young man that said he believes that there is a Higher Being, believes that we have souls that live beyond our physical bodies, thinks that there may be such places as heaven and hell but hasn't really spent much time thinking about it. I simply encouraged him to spend some time investigating those things that are eternal. I mean if you believe that heaven and hell could exist, wouldn't you want to find out for sure? And wouldn't you want to know how to get into one and stay out of the other? Eternity happens to be a pretty long time. I hope to have more conversations with him in the near future. This life is a pretty fragile thing and can end at any moment.

This Sunday, I'll be at Living Waters in Nixa MO and on the 19th I'll be at East Side Baptist Church in Mountain Home AR. I've been to both of these churches in the past and it is always nice to be asked to back to a place. I have the Pastor's Bible study at Hopedale on Wednesday night.

God is soooo good!

John

Three years, ten months, ten days.

5 comments:

Bilbo said...

Yes, we all need to prioritize. I sometimes wish I had a day stretcher or a week padder to make more time to allow for all the things I have to do and the things I enjoy doing (which aren't always the same). I'll look forward to meeting you in May here in DC...as your travel plans firm up, e-mail me and we'll set it up! Best wishes, Bilbo.

Kevin said...

That was a nice post to read, John.

It must be very rewarding to watch as people accept Christ into their lives and to know that you were a part of that.

I've talked recently on my blog about not being one who feels comfortable sharing Christ with others. Mostly for fear of rejection, ridicule or maybe disdain...lots of excuses but none of them valid.

Tammy and I were talking about taking an 'equipping' class at church to help us in this area.

Amanda said...

You are so hardworking, John. It is always so motivating to read about people as driven, disciplined and committed to your faith as you. Have fun meeting up with Bilbo. I'm sure the both of you will have HEAPS to talk and laugh about.

John said...

Thanks for the comments, all.

Kevin, there are lots of good courses and materials available for equipping. When I'm at a church for a revival or Bible study, I try to make sure to fulfill my calling as an evangelist by "equipping the saints." I want to give them something useful in sharing their faith. One thing that may help with the fear of rejection is separating witnessing from evangelizing.

Witnessing is simply telling others what God has done for you. Evangelizing begins when you start telling them what God can do for them.

Winessing is very non threatening...it's just your story. There is no right or wrong and little to argue or debate about. It's your story. The evangelism part can flow quite naturally from the conversation, but doesn't always.

Maybe that will help.
John

Kevin said...

John, yes, that makes perfect sense. Thanks.