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Reflection: Courage to share the Gospel

I remember my early days as a missionary in Tanzania, East Africa. My brain would feel tired at night after trying to function all day in the language of Swahili. I made plenty of embarrassing mistakes too. Once I gave a lady in the market the equivalent of 32 dollars instead of 32 cents for a pineapple! The news spread that I was an easy target for being duped when shopping.

Days and then weeks went by and the Holy Spirit was nudging me to, “Go out and witness.” I would reply, “Lord, I’m not ready yet! I can’t share the Gospel in Swahili, I’ll mess it up!”

Finally, one day I agreed. I got my Bible and headed out the door, promising the Lord that I would witness to the very first person I met on the road.

I soon met two teenaged boys. I began a simple conversation and soon I told them I had come to share good news and I began telling them the Gospel. Sometimes I mispronounced words and the boys helped me. Once they laughed and corrected my sentence structure, but I plowed on! At the end, I asked them if they wanted to pray and they said, “Yes!” My presentation was poor, but God was still able to use it.

I began to disciple the boys, writing a simple lesson each week. They invited friends and over the next year, the group grew to 107.

This passage by Paul gave me the courage I needed and I hope it will encourage you too:

When I came to you, brothers, I did not come with excellency of speech or superior wisdom as I proclaimed to you the testimony about God. For I resolved to know nothing while I was with you except Jesus Christ and him crucified. I Cor. 2:1-2

Written by Dr. Carolyn Knight

Hope Center Indy Training Manager and Church Liaison

Leader of Light In Darkness

Photo picturing Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania.

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