Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Leading Loved Ones to the Lord Takes Patience

Shortly after Jamie and I were married in 1998, I committed myself fully to going after God and all he had for my new life. I'd come out of some pretty messy stuff and began to feel burdened for loved ones who were still stuck in the messy. One of those was my brother, a teenage {sorta nerdy} gamer who was, indisputably, the most logical thinker in the family. In my 18 year old, new Christian zeal, I had a conversation with him one night that would change his life.

I told him all I knew about God, the Bible, and the fiery pits of Hell---a place he was surely headed to if he didn't repent that instant. Now, even though that really is true, it was not the best idea for me to yell, cry, and scare him to death with thoughts of demons ripping his immortal body to shreds with their teeth---a fate worse than death since there's no death in eternity, I'd learned. Over 15 years later, when my brother did finally come to a belief in God, {not through any of my doing, I must admit} he told me that the conversation from that night was a big reason why he did not come to Christ that day. My heart was in the right place, but I went about it all wrong.

There's definitely a time and place for bringing the word of truth in a massive force of passion and excitement. However, in most of our everyday relationships, actions speak louder than words when we're burdened for unbelievers. 1 Peter 1:13-16 talks about former unbelievers being conformed to sin because of ignorance. It's more than just hearing right from wrong that changes hearts, it's being convicted of truth that leads someone to understanding and repentance. I hate to break it to you, but the Holy Spirit is the only one who can bring conviction.

Planting a seed is a good start, but many of us stop there. Leading someone to a revelation of truth is often a process of nurturing---sometimes a very lengthy process. We need to model right behavior and show people what following Christ looks like, then be prepared with Biblical answers in the right timing.

If we want to see lives changed, we must commit time and patience to the people God puts in our paths. We shouldn't give up too soon when the message isn't immediately received. Even though the knowledge that Jesus can come at any moment fills us with urgency, we've got to remember to trust in God's timing. Rushing it in our own power can backfire and push people away.

How about you? Are you the fiery evangelist type who brings the message like a tidal wave or are you the slow and steady pastor who gently leads others by example and with patience?


  1. Yes ,I've been in prayer for My adult daughters since they were born,all four of them are in different stages of their journey of belief.A lifetime of seeds still haven't bought a couple of them to their knees. I know God is faithful,I claim They will all be standing in the gates of Heaven with Me.OX Denise

  2. Yes, actions speak louder than words. thank you for the reminder!

  3. I think many of us can get excited but that excitement results in poor communication sometimes. Thank you so much for sharing this. It's a must read!


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Mrs. Sarah Coller

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