We live in broken world that needs Jesus. Simple disciplemaking demands that we have our eyes open for opportunities to help people begin following Him.
What if Jesus hadn’t kept His eyes open to the opportunities around Him? In His interaction with the Samaritan woman at Jacob’s Well (John 4), He crossed social barriers to engage with a broken woman. It eventually led to many of the Samaritans from that town believing in Him—all from one encounter with one seemingly random person at a well. Jesus told His disciples:
“Do you not say, ‘Four months more and then the harvest’? I tell you, open
your eyes and look at the fields! They are ripe for harvest.” (John 4:35 NIV84)
One day last fall when Pam was out of town, I decided to go to Chipotle for dinner. There in line I met a young sergeant named Josh (not his real name). We both consider that evening providential.
I struck up a casual conversation that went deep quickly when he shared some very difficult family issues with me, right there in the line. After we got our food and headed out of the restaurant, he asked me what I do. I told him I worked with The Navigators, a group that helps people in their relationship with God. He told me, “I just started attending church with some friends.” When I asked if he would be interested in having one of our local staff contact him, he said yes. We exchanged cell numbers.
I had enjoyed talking to him so much, I decided to begin meeting with him myself. Since that time in November, he has decided to pursue a relationship with Christ. We have become friends and are meeting in Bible study. All because I chose to keep my eyes open when I met Josh that night at Chipotle. What a gift his friendship is to me! Thank you, Lord.
What are the places you frequent where you could keep your eyes open for opportunities? At work? Your child’s sports or school activity? What keeps us from watching for opportunities to engage with those around us and begin relationships that could be an encouragement to both parties?