Ministry teams ‘plant seeds’
PIN TRADING IS popular–here, Cadet Jesus Quintanilla explains the meaning of the More Than Gold pin to an interested visitor.
BY KYLE DEXTER –
All things come at their proper time. For American speed skater Casey FitzRandolph, this proved true when after losing in Nagano, he beat the defending champion and captured gold for the USA.
God works things in his own time, too, and those of us doing street ministry with More Than Gold can best be described as “planting seeds.” We plant the seed of Christ into the heart and mind of anyone who will listen. This seed planting can be a difficult activity for even a passionate Christian. (Shouldn’t every Christian be passionate?)
Every Salvation Army volunteer at the Olympics isn’t just handing out water for the sake of hydration; rather they are trying to pass out “living water” to those who desperately need the love of Christ.
What makes this difficult is that not everyone who comes by to drink the physical water will also choose to drink the living water. One woman was heard to say, “This isn’t the place for this [evangelism].” Thus, Christians at the Olympics are faced with a paradox in regard to evangelism.
We know we can’t force Jesus upon people, yet we also know the implications of not accepting Jesus as Savior. We try to be tactful, but we know how important Salvation is.
Sometimes we become frustrated when we don’t see people coming to the Lord. It’s hard to remember that we are “planting seeds” for the kingdom, and that the “fruit” will be seen later. Ultimately it’s the Holy Spirit that will convict people and allow them to see their need for God’s presence in their lives. This street ministry and planting of seeds is just as important as the “harvesting” to come.
Christians who encounter those who aren’t ready to accept Christ must look to the future and put confidence in God’s plan for each person’s life. Those with closed hearts one day may come to the altar another day. Let Salvationists everywhere pray for the continued faithfulness of all who reach out through street ministry.
“Thus the saying ‘One sows and another reaps’ is true. I sent you to reap what you have not worked for. Others have done the hard work, and you have reaped the benefits of their labor.” (John 4: 37-38)