Have you ever doubted your abilities or effectiveness as a witness? I’ll admit, I have. I want to discuss some misconceptions about sharing the gospel that fuels fear in my heart and the hearts of other about witnessing. If you’ve struggled like I have with any of these, my intention is not to discourage you, but rather I pray you will be fully equipped to boldly take the Gospel of truth to the world.
Before reading on, I encourage you to read the first entry in this series. Click here to access it #1: YOU MUST BE GOOD AT IT. And while you at it, take a look at this simple, yet powerful picture of the Holy Trinity.
#2: Everything in your own life has to be together
We hinder ourselves in witnessing for Jesus because of our issues, but here’s the truth –you don’t have to be perfect in order to be a Christian. Actually, if you think you’re a perfect Christian, then stop reading now… Did you stop reading? I didn’t think so! It is made clear to us that perfection is not necessary in Galatians 6:3:
“If anyone thinks they are something when they are not, they deceive themselves.
Furthermore, the Spirit encouraged you to begin witnessing in the first place, why would now want to “perfect” yourself my worldly standards? Galatians 3:3 says:
Are you so foolish? After beginning by means of the Spirit, are you now trying to finish by means of the flesh?
The Spirit points us to the sacrifice of Jesus. Our flesh brags about our own achievements and abilities. To accept God’s grace, we must admit that God did for us what we could not do for ourselves. Why then do we get so caught up with our own “perfect” performances?
When we focus on “how well we’re doing” as Christians, it’s easy to let mistakes impair us. We also fear that the lost will see through our facade and point out our imperfections.
I have good news: God still has grace for us and it is still sufficient for you and me (2 Corinthians 12:9). You don’t have to be perfect to be a witness. You don’t have to appear perfect either. In fact, it’s better if you don’t. You can testify of the changes God has made in your life, but you can also be honest about the work God is still doing. Philippians 1:6 encourages us, saying:
“being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.”
Yes, God redeemed and delivered when you repented, believed in Jesus and were baptised. However, He continues to do a good work in you—God’s not done yet, you’re not done yet. This is no excuse for sin, we all sin a fall short of the glory of God. I’m saying, don’t undervalue the power of God’s grace. Don’t let your current struggle pull you down. Endure through the struggles (2 Timothy 2:10).
Jesus gave Himself up before God as the perfect sacrifice for your sins. He pleaded your case in the courts of heaven. He defended you against the convicting claims of the enemy. He continues to defend you. Your justification is not based on your works or actions, but on the blood of Christ.
Sanctification is an ongoing process. As believers, we are complete in our identity, but our transformation is continual and a lifetime commitment. When we trust in our own righteous acts, we’re acting like we’ve arrived. It’s as if we no longer need grace. But no matter who you are, you still need it. I still need it.
Let God take the pressure off. Your “perfection” isn’t what draws people to the Gospel. Jesus draws you in, He draws us all in (John12:32). The transforming work in your life can and should act as a testimony to others (without a test, there can be no testimony). However, even if you feel like you’ve got a long way to go, you can be a witness today. God has the power to save people despite our imperfections.
What we receive to be witnesses is not of this world, but from the Spirit who is from God. The Spirit intercedes for us, Jesus, who is at the right hand of God, intercedes for us, so that we may understand what God has for us.