“Always Be Ready”

In I Peter 3:13-15 Peter says the following:

13 Who is going to hurt you if you really want to do good? 14 But suppose you do suffer for doing what is right. Even then you will be blessed. Scripture says, “Don’t fear what others say they will do to hurt you. Don’t be afraid.” (Isaiah 8:1215 But make sure that in your hearts you honor Christ as Lord. Always be ready to give an answer to anyone who asks you about the hope you have. Be ready to give the reason for it. But do it gently and with respect.”

For several years I have been a part of a men’s group where they sometimes ask the following questions.

  1. Have you prayed every day in the past week.
  2. Have you read God’s word every day this past week.
  3. Have you met the needs of your wife? (If they don’t have a wife they are either skipped or the question is modified.)
  4. Have you told someone new about Jesus?

 

Most of us answer the first two questions with a “yes” or maybe an “almost every day.”    

Question three is a little more difficult.  Answers might be “I hope so”,  “I’ve tried”, or even “I don’t think I have this week.”  (Some of our wives have suggested that they should send a note to share with the group.)

The last question is the most difficult.  Usually not more than one or two answer with a “yes.” Since being at CCH I have been able to answer affirmatively more often than before, but there are still weeks that I have to admit that I have not told anyone new about Jesus.

 

Peter says that we should always be ready to tell others about our hope.  Maybe our prayer time should be focused on how we can witness to others.  Maybe we need to be examining the scriptures more that will teach us how to witness.  Maybe focusing on meeting the needs of those who are closest to us will help us when we try to witness to those who are not so near.

Sometimes the opportunity to witness will happen when you least expect it.  Several years ago the preacher of a church in Florida invited me to go to a local pool and swim laps.  I swam about a mile and decided to stretch in the large hot tub at the deep end of the pool. Someone asked me where I was from, and when I told him I lived in South Africa he asked me about HIV-AIDS. I mentioned several of the problems we had witnessed, and then I told him that when people obey God, many of the diseases we are faced with are no longer a problem.  By the time the preacher joined us, we were involved in quite a theological discussion.  We were both amazed, because he had visited the same pool many times and never had the opportunity to witness. 

Let’s all be praying that even in these times of social distancing God will give us opportunities, and lets pray that we will have to courage to share our blessed hope.

Dennis Messimer – International Minister