And He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature.”Mark 16:15
By Bro. John L. Cash
The Scriptures teach us to share the Gospel. I find that most believers want to do that—to share with others what the Lord has done in their lives. However, most of us also want to avoid the label of “religious fanatic.” And we don’t want to be perceived as using the high-pressure manipulation tactics of a door-to-door salesman when we tell others about the Good News.
So I want to tell you a story about how I think the best evangelism really works. As I often tell my congregation when I strike out on a tangent, “Bear with me. We’re headed somewhere.”
When my sister Cathie and I were little kids, our mother had surgery. There were complications, she had to be given blood transfusions, and the aftermath left her very weak. Our father, being the good husband he was, hired women to help our mother with household chores. Our regular part-time housekeeper and cook was named “Clemmie,” which was short for “Clementine”. She was our favorite and the one we remember most.However, one Saturday morning, Clemmie couldn’t come. In her place came the SCL — the Substitute Cleaning Lady.
None of us can remember the SCL’s name, but we all remember what she did that day. Our mother had cooked pancakes for breakfast. The Substitute Cleaning Lady said, “Ma’am, what are you going to do with that leftover pancake batter?” My mother said she was probably just going to throw it away. So the SCL asked, “Can I have it?”Of course, Mother agreed.
The SCL took our largest skillet, greased it, and proceeded to make the biggest pancake we had ever seen. (Silly us, we were in the habit of making a lot of little pancakes instead of one big pancake the size of the skillet.) After she fried that new continent to golden-pancake-perfection, she flipped it on a plate and sat down to eat it.
Then my sister and I did what any other red-blooded American children presented with the same situation would do. We sat down and watched her eat that giant pancake.
Now here’s the point: People are naturally attracted to things that are out-of-the-ordinary. In this day and age, it’s pretty normal to be unnoticed and to not have anyone really care about your daily life and problems.So…if you really cared for your neighbor, and showed your love and concern for your neighbor…well, that would really be out-of-the-ordinary. She would probably be drawn to you, and maybe one day you could ask your neighbor (who is now your friend) to the ice cream social at your church, where she might hear just the Word that she needs.
This week, use your thoughtfulness to attract others so you can gently point them to the Savior. Remember that no one can resist seeing true kindness…or a giant pancake.
Dr. John L. Cash is the “Country Preacher Dad” * Sing that to the tune of “Secret Agent Man.” He was raised in Stuttgart, Arkansas, and is beginning his third decade of being a country preacher in the piney woods five miles south of the little town of Hickory, Mississippi.He and his lovely wife, Susan, and his sons, Spencer (age 17) and Seth (age 14) live in the parsonage next door to the Antioch Christian Church(where Mr. Pic’s son-in-law, Curt Dickson, once made the largest pot of jambalaya that Creation has ever seen). You should drop him a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.