As a member of the Auxiliary of The Gideons International, I have the privilege of witnessing by giving New Testaments. In the back of each New Testament is the plan of salvation. I have had opportunities to give these Testaments to many people. Each time, I am faced with the decision of what I say and how much I say to the person receiving the Testament. In other words, to speak or not to speak of the greatest story ever told.
I have heard witnessing described as a “divine appointment”. The Holy Spirit often prods me to keep that appointment with someone I encounter. I must decide if I will obey….will I speak or not speak? I have learned that when I decide not to speak, I am miserable about that decision. I will be troubled forever with the instances when I made the choice to not listen to the Holy Spirit’s urging. Do I believe that my choice to not witness will doom someone to hell? No, I think that God is able to reach that person if I choose not to be His instrument. I do think, however, that I lose a blessing and joy when I don’t do what I know God is telling me to do.
Loren Eisley wrote this story: One day a man was walking along the beach when he noticed a boy picking something up and gently throwing it back into the ocean. Approaching the boy, he asked, What are you doing? The youth replied, throwing starfish back into the ocean. The surf is up and the tide is going out. If I don’t throw them back, they’ll die. Son, the man said, don’t you realize there are miles and miles of beach and hundreds of starfish? You can’t make a difference! After listening politely, the boy bent down, picked up another starfish, and threw it back into the surf. Then, smiling at the man, he said, I made a difference for that one.
There are millions of unsaved people in the world. We think we can’t make a difference in reaching the unsaved. But, we can make a difference for one person! When the Holy Spirit gives you a “divine appointment” to witness, please make the choice to keep that appointment!
II Corinthians 6:2: “For He says, ‘At the acceptable time I listened to you, And on the day of salvation I helped you’. Behold, now is the acceptable time. Behold, now is the day of salvation.” NASB