Kendra Schmidt, Senior Health Sciences Major
I have had the opportunity to get involved with Go Greenville for the past two years, specifically with the Worldview Survey. This outreach partners with local churches and conducts a Worldview Survey of the community surrounding the church. We go door to door in groups of two or three and ask participants questions regarding their religious beliefs. The goal of this survey is to share the Gospel and to point people to Jesus Christ! There are many benefits to going on this outreach; some include growth in interpersonal skills, skills in starting up conversations, directing conversations to God and the Gospel, growing in areas of your personal walk with God, having areas in your life that you struggle in pointed out… and so much more. I could go into detail with all these benefits and include many more ways on how I have seen my life and understanding of the Gospel change through them, but instead I am going to share two specific stories from two conversations which were results of this outreach.
First, my group and I had a conversation with a Muslim man that turned into him calling his whole family to come out and talk to us about the Muslim beliefs. We talked back and forth for an hour about a few of the differences between Christianity and Islam. We pointed them to Scripture and showed them verses that disprove what they were saying. Unfortunately, they would still come back with another argument/contradiction. Although no one got saved at the end of the conversation, a seed was planted, questions were left in their minds (and my mind), and one guy in the group was able to get this man’s contact information and has further met up with him and talked to him about the Gospel and Jesus Christ. I left this conversation wanting to learn more about the difference between Christianity and Islam. I left wanting to study more about how to be effective in approaching people who have arguments and questions that contradict my faith. God has used this experience to grow me in my desire to reach Muslims.
Second, I was able to see God’s Sovereignty very specifically played out as my group talked to this older gentleman. We only got to the first question on the survey, but with that one question we heard a 10-minute salvation story! To share very briefly, this man grew up in a Catholic environment. He was an altar boy and a choir boy. He went to church every Sunday and was in the Catholic school throughout the week. In college, he ended up going to school in Hawaii. At this point in his life, he didn’t go to church. After he graduated and started working, one of his female colleagues began talking to him every day about Jesus. He would want to party-it-up and she would want to do a Bible Study. She never stopped trying to share the Gospel with him, and eventually he started going to church due to the death of a mutual friend of theirs. Through this tragedy and trial, he got saved. He continued to share with us the struggles he has faced since salvation. This man’s testimony was amazing, but it didn’t end there. He shared with us that this past May, his colleague and friend from Hawaii was in Charleston and they were able to catch up and share how God has worked in their lives over the past 40 years of not seeing each other. As he was sharing his story, I was convicted about the many times I don’t trust God in small aspects of life. At the end of his story, I was convinced that my God is Sovereign in all circumstances. His colleague had no clue how much she impacted his life as a Christian until over 40 years later. This conversation, like many others I have had, encouraged me to trust God in the unknown and seek His will no matter how hard or difficult my circumstances might be.
In conclusion, and as I have said before, the benefits of outreaches are innumerable. Whether you hear a salvation story or see God use you to plant a seed in someone’s life, you will grow as you get involved in an outreach!
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The CGO Blog
Written by the CGO staff, with guest posts from students and other faculty/staff at BJU to provide thought leadership for missions in a new millennium.