What me, an Evangelist?

March 4th, 2009

About ten or so years ago my Pastor came up to me and said to me those words that might be quite scarey for some people. He said, “Dave I think you might just have the call of evangelist on your life”.

For me I had mixed emotions. I was glad to have been recognised as something, but I also was unsure what this meant for me and my future ministry. My first thoughts were who is an evangelist that I know and what do they do. The first person I thought of was Billy Graham, so I thought I would be a crusade evangelist and an intinerant preacher.

Before long I realised that while I can preach I didn’t really have a huge desire to preach to stadiums and travel around a lot. My stable job and young family at the time didn’t really allow that either. So I started to explore what it means to be an evangelist and how this actually would work out in my life and ministry.

What I found was that while sometimes I preach evangelistic messages and people respond, most of the evangelism I did was one on one in the workplace or in the community. It was about building relationships with people as I went about my daily life and sharing my faith with them in a natural way over time. I found that I seemed to have a knack for sharing the Gospel in a way people understood and they responded.

I also found that I was able to teach others some of the things I learned and they were able to put this into practice with their family, friends and neighbours. This is where I started to realise that while an evangelist reaches people for Christ, they also help equip the church like it says in Ephesians 4:11-12. Things started to make sense and fall into place.

Another place where my evangelism efforts have worked out is through this website. In the last ten years we have had several million people stop by! These days this website is about encouraging people on their journey of faith and life, but initially it was solely to reach people for Christ and help Christians be more effective in sharing their faith. In essence it was about e-vangelism!

So what am I saying in all of this? I guess I am saying that sometimes we can be recognised as something by our church leadership, but it might take time to really work through it and see how that works in your life and ministry. You might find, like I did, that your first thoughts of what things might look like need to be adjusted as time moves on. For example you might find that if you have been recognised as having a “pastoral heart” it might work itself out as a nurse, counsellor or chaplain, rather than a church Pastor. As with all things, time is usually the best test.