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Amplifying EvangelismmdashWhy Preparation for Evangelism Is More Important than Evangelism

Written by Ed Stetzer on . Posted in Ed Stetzer

As God nurtures us, we are ever ready to share the gospel.

Two nights ago, as I was getting kids ready for bed, I received a phone call from a sweet woman who has been a victim of sexual exploitation for years, perhaps decades. I met her in a bar a few years ago and felt an instant bond with her. “Laurie,” her message began, “I would like to see you.” My friend had just discovered she needed a liver transplant after having suffered quite a bit over the past few months with issues related to a number of organs. “It’s going downhill quickly,” she said.

My heart raced as I listened to her message. Overlaying her words were God’s, telling me I needed to see her. As I texted with her last night I tried to contextualize the gospel message as best I could through my knowledge of her, my understanding of her situation, and the technology I had. I would perhaps best describe my texts as a stream of living thoughts seeking to be the seed that plants itself on good soil (yes, I had just read Mark 4 the night before). At worst, they were a cacophony which beated wildly with the hope that one word would fill my friend’s heart.

Evangelism is like that, isn’t it? When we least expect it, God provides an opportunity to give a reason for the hope that dwells within us. We may open our mouths and out runs streams of living water. More often than not, I have found, we open our mouths and out runs something more like drops of water, a trickle that is sometimes beautiful and unified and other times…not.

The older I get in my faith and in my understanding of God, the more I am convinced that our preparation for evangelism is equally if not more important than our evangelism. No, I’m not talking about studying whatever gospel tract ...

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