My mother is near the end of her struggle with cancer. It has been a long and hard ordeal for the family. My mother was first diagnosed with this particular cancer over four years ago. We have had plenty of time to get ready, perhaps too much time. Many of the things we wanted or needed to do, we put off. Even though we knew we had limited time, the present time never seemed the right time to do things. Then, suddenly, it is too late. My mother took a turn for the worse and has gone downhill rapidly.
My mother has been a fine Christian woman all of her life. Her spiritual affairs have always been in order. Spiritually speaking, her bags are packed and she is ready to go.
I cannot say the same for all of my friends. Many do not have their spiritual affairs in order. Some have only a faint glow of faith, others deny Christ entirely. It has always been my intention to witness to them gently, so as to persuade them to embrace the love of Jesus. It has been my intention, but there always seemed to be plenty of time.
There is nothing I can say that will bring to faith. No clever argument that will convince them. What must be done must be by the Holy Spirit. The bible tells us that in the Holy Spirit works through the Word. Not our compelling arguments, not our fine examples, but from our simply sharing the good news of our salvation.
That’s it. We don’t have to bellow and roar, we don’t have to live a perfect life, and we don’t have to beat their arguments. We simply have to open our mouths and be a witness.
So why don’t we? Quite simply the delay is because we tell ourselves that we have time. That, and we’re scared. We are scared of what others will think of us. We are scared of offending them and looking like “bible thumpers” – those hypocritical do-gooders that are always telling others how to live their lives. We don’t want to intrude where we are not wanted, to bring up subjects that may make them uncomfortable, or drive them away.
Suppose you were in a building that was on fire. The fire has not yet reached your floor, but it certainly will. Suppose you were the only one who knew this and knew the way to safety. Would you tell the others? Of course you would. You would shout as loud as you could to get everyone’s attention. You wouldn’t say to yourself, “If I start to shout and wave my arms, everyone will think I’m some kind of fool.” It wouldn’t matter; people’s lives are in danger.
So it is with our friends who are unbelievers. Do you care what happens to them after they die? Do you think it’s important? Important enough to say something? Important enough to make them uncomfortable?
Time is running out.