Article by Teresa Chang
It took God speaking to me directly through dreams and visions that I discovered that He was calling me to be an evangelist. Being raised in a church birthed out of a prayer movement, our church tended to be very monastic, and seldom engaged with the lost or even talked about reaching the lost! I started having more and more dreams of my unsaved friends perishing without knowing the Lord. Or I would have visions of droves of people screaming and crying out because they were so desperate to know Jesus. These dreams and visions took possession of my heart, and I would grieve for the lost. One of the biggest struggles for me when I started having these dreams was that I had no one to disciple me or guide me in evangelism. Most of those who felt called to reach the lost had already left our church in frustration or disappointment. It was a sad reality that I could not talk to my church leaders about what God was showing me without being misunderstood or them reacting in shame because they knew they should’ve carried more urgency for reaching the lost. Feeling convicted of the divide between the evangelists and the church, I purposed to build up evangelism in my church wherever I could, whether it was when I served in youth ministry, college ministry or the young adults. I always made it my main focus to equip and raise up church members to be confident in sharing their faith.
We can’t spend much time in the New Testament without realizing an urgency for the gospel. John 3:16 isn’t a Christian colloquialism or just a verse all of us memorized in Sunday School—it is our lifeblood, our very foundation.
We carry an incredible message in earthen vessels. Yes, people might reject our message, but that is a very small thing when compared to the benefits that will flood people’s lives as they find what their hearts have been seeking: relationship with God.
You can discover the “hidden” evangelists in your congregation by preaching on the topic and calling to the front those whose hearts are stirred. See who responds, pray with these people and then begin to meet with them regularly. Offer them training tools and additional teaching on evangelism and find out what aspects or styles of evangelism make them come alive. Experiment with evangelistic teams, outreaches and events and find out what works for your region and what needs improvement.