Summary: Jesus' urgency to reach the lost - may that be our urgency as well!
Wednesday: John 10:16 "I have other sheep that are not of this sheep pen. I must bring them also. They too will listen to my voice, and there shall be one flock and one shepherd."
Can you sense the urgency of Jesus as he describes himself as the Good Shepherd. Yes, he loves you and knows you and takes care of you. But there's something else on his mind too. I have other sheep, he says. There are other sheep that are not of this sheep pen, not yet anyway. And then he expresses a sense of urgency - I must bring them also! I must, he says.
He doesn't say, if I feel like it, or if it's convenient. But I must. They too will listen to my voice, Jesus says, and there shall be one flock, and one shepherd. Jesus cares very much about people who are not yet Christians. The way Jesus talks here about those other sheep - there are really two kinds of people - there are the Christians, like you, and there are the "not-yet-Christians."
Who do you know, that's not yet a Christian? How many of them are you related to? How many of them are you friends with? How many of them do you work with? God surrounds you with these not-yet-Christians, these other sheep, that are not yet part of his church, and he gives you the chance to witness to them. But how do you do that? How do we witness to people about Jesus Christ?
You can boil witnessing down to 3 simple words - Live. Pray. Speak. Step one is to live. When you are working at your part time job, you live as a Christian. When the rest of your co-workers are using bad language, not trying very hard to do a good job, you don't act that way. Instead, you let your light shine, that they might see your good deeds and glorify God. You resolve to be the best part time employee that place has ever seen. You work hard, you're honest, you use good language, you're kind, you're friendly. You live this way in front of your coworkers - because a lot of them are not yet Christians, and they'll notice what you're doing.
That's step one - to live. Step two is to pray. Dear God, please bless all the people in my life who don't yet believe in you. Help me to witness to them. Cause them to be curious about why I live the way I live, what I believe, and ask me questions. And bless the words I say, that I might speak clearly to them that you are my Savior from sin. Dear Lord, bless these sheep that are not of this sheep pen. Cause them to believe in you. That's step two. You pray.
And as you live and you pray, you speak. That's step 3. God will answer your prayer. God will bring opportunities into your life where you will have you a chance to speak. Your co-worker will ask you what you believe and why. Your friend, your relative, who knows, maybe even a total stranger - people will ask you what you believe, what do you think, what's your opinion, why do you live the way you do, why do you go to that Christian school, what do you do on Sunday morning, why don’t you sin like everyone else - these conversations are coming your way. Are you ready for them? Are you ready to be a witness for your Savior Jesus Christ? Live. Pray. And speak. And God the Holy Spirit will bless you and everyone that listens to you.
There's the story of the pastor who was serving at a mission church in downtown Chicago. He lived right there in downtown, and he had made a promise to God that he would not go to bed without witnessing to at least one person a day. It was getting late and he was about to go to bed when he realized that he hadn't witnessed to anyone that day. He wanted to keep his promise to God, so he went out into the street at night, and walked up to the first person he saw - a total stranger standing by a bus stop. "Are you a Christian?" he asked the man. The man screamed at him, told him that he was doing more harm than good in the world, and that Christians were worthless.
A week later, that same man attended the church service of that pastor. "I'm sorry for what I said," he said to the pastor. "I haven't been able to stop thinking about my life, and God, and my soul, since you talked to me last week at the bus stop." That man came to faith in Christ, by the grace of God, and turned out to be one of the hardest working volunteers and Sunday School teachers in that church.