When it comes to personal evangelism, “What can we do?” is a question that has many good answers. It is a much-debated mystery why the average Christian is not more active in personal evangelism. Is it because we lack desire (motivation) or is it because we lack know-how (training)? A lack of motivation inhibits our training and a lack of training inhibits our motivation. Activities in the realm of personal evangelism fall into three basic areas which will be considered in this post.
First, we can pray about personal evangelism. If we neglect prayer we risk rendering our work a complete failure (Luke 6:12-13; Acts 13:1-3). It may be that we have so few opportunities to teach because we spend so little time in prayer. Praying is something everybody can do right now, without any further training. If a person were to regularly pray about personal evangelism two or three hours a week, great results would follow (Matthew 9:37-38). Praying about the spread of the gospel ought to occupy a good amount of the time of even the most seasoned personal evangelist.
Second, we can prepare ourselves to do personal evangelism. Preparation is essential in any important work. Of the thirty-three years that Jesus lived, the work He came to do took only about three years. The remaining ninety-one percent of His life was taken up in preparation. When we ask, “What can I do?”, we may be overlooking the fact that time spent equipping ourselves for the work is a vital part of what it takes to win souls to the Lord (1 Timothy 4:15-16; 2 Timothy 2:21).
Third, we must go out and do personal evangelism. Eventually, we must get down to the business of actually communicating the gospel to those who are lost — and this is where most of us balk. The work of personal evangelism encompasses numerous activities, directly or indirectly, all of which are important in their own way. Having prayed and prepared, we simply need to adopt attitude of Isaiah: “Here am I; Send me” (Isaiah 6:8).
The key to being active is committing the time. We need to commit an amount of time each week to personal evangelism. In selecting activities, we should take some from each of the three areas of praying, preparing and acting. When we have done that, the question of what to do with that time can be answered in numerous ways. “There is much to do, there’s work on ev’ry hand …”