Summary: 5 Practical helps that will get your people talking! "A Witness is no braver than anyone else, just brave for about 10 seconds longer!"
Overcoming Fear in Witnessing
Our life should be a living witness…but we haven’t FULLY COMPLETED our witness until we open our mouth and speak. That is hard, but necessary—-"sharing the actual WORDS of the gospel."
How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher?
Ill--A survey was given to those attending training sessions for a Billy Graham crusade in Detroit. One question asked, "What is your greatest hindrance to witnessing?" Nine percent said they were too busy to remember to do it. Twenty-eight percent felt the lack of real information to share. None said they didn’t really care. Twelve percent said their own lives were not speaking as they should. But by far the largest group were the 51 percent whose biggest problem was the fear of how the other person would react!
This is a hard step because of fear—it is a realistic fear, it is difficult.
Fear of rejection/embarrassment/labeled as fanatic/thought of differently/not liked anymore.
You aren’t the first to be afraid, you’re not a spiritual sissy, it’s common to man since the 1st c. in our text!
"A Witness is no braver than anyone else, just brave for about 10 seconds longer!" Just open your mouth and blurt it out there.
Now, that will help, but it may not be quite enough to help you open your mouth when it comes to a relative, a co-worker, a friend, a neighbor…so here’s some very practical yet Biblical suggestions to help further.
1. Ask God for the filling of the Holy Spirit.
Ill.—Peter, afraid at crucifixion, ran for his life, cowered down…followed the procession as far as the house of the high priest, but then warmed himself at the fire/a young lady recognized him and tried to point him out, and he denied 3 times, w/ curse words for emphasis!
Acts 2 happened! “Filled w/ Spirit!”
“How can I be filled?” Not complicated.
Different than being indwelled…filled means controlled. [be not drunk, but controlled by this!]
Ill.—sharp cutting edge on axe—imagine beating a tree w/ only the handle, or w/ the back of the maul! Get nowhere!
You need a cutting edge, it will get their attention, they’ll sense you know what you’re talking about, they’ll WANT to listen. And the Holy Spirit brings conviction, something you have not been successful at doing, right?
4 steps to being filled:
• Self-examination—takes time, daily, in prayer and in the Word.
• Confession=cleansing— 1 John 1:9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
Be specific, ask God to bring it to mind, name them one by one. Our problem is we want to sin retail and confess wholesale!
• Repentance—turning from our sins, a change of mind—more than just I’m sorry, but it’s proof! God won’t use a dirty vessel…He doesn’t put His powerful hand into a dirty glove to do His work! Ill.—sharing drinks as a family/grimy hands on glass, floaters!/kimberly’s lipstick!
• Ask God to fill you-- Luke 11:13 If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?
And fear will flee when you’re filled w/ the Holy Spirit.
2. Pray earnestly about your fear.
I sought the Lord, and he heard me, and delivered me from all my fears.
We are to pray acc’d to God’s will, sometimes we’re not sure if it’s His will and so we say, only if it’s your will, Lord!
But there’s some things we KNOW are God’s will:
• That they be saved
• Fear, too!
3. Memorize a good soul-winning plan, we’ll come back to that.
4. Claim God’s presence as you go
Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:  Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.
Claim that promise! I’m not alone, He’s never more w/ me than when I make His last command my first concern!
He left us here, didn’t take us on to heaven, so we can bring others.
He plants us in specific places for a purpose.
Neighborhood/job/school/class!/family…uniquely qualifying us to reach out to a circle that no one else can!
[F.R.A.N. = Friends, Relatives, Associates, Neighbors]
What’s God’s purpose for your job?…not to sell insurance, but to support you in your real job, soulwinning!