Matthew 14; Mark 6; Luke 9:1-17
Jesus’ twelve disciples were given power to heal diseases as He sent them out to tell people about Him. “Spread the Gospel,” He told them. “Heal their sick. But if they refuse to listen, don’t waste your time. Leave that place and go where hearts are ready to hear.”
I have a friend who changes the subject every time I want to talk about the Lord, or any time I give thanks to God. She has attended a few church services with me over the years. But generally speaking, she is closed to listening to anything about my love of Jesus.
Does this Scripture say I should just walk away from this friendship? Shake the dust from my feet and move on because she is not listening? I don’t think so.
There might be a fine line between sharing the Gospel with a lost world, and being obnoxious and pushing people further away. I don’t think this Scripture gives us an excuse to remain silent. I think it tells us to follow God’s lead, and be ready to speak to people whose hearts are ready to hear.
I don’t push my friend to talk to me when I feel the barriers go up. In a sense I guess I do shake the dust off those conversations. But I also look for the next opportunity to share the Lord with her. And I pray that God will continue to soften her heart and prepare her to listen sometime soon.
Because I don’t think that God, who is not willing that anyone die without Him, gave up on those cities that weren’t listening to His disciples at that time. And I don’t think He wants me to give up on my friend.
Father, I pray for your children today. May you give us a sensitivity to know when to speak and when to remain silent. Prepare the hearts of our friends and loved ones to receive You as their Savior. And may we be obedient to share the Gospel when You nudge us to do so. Help us not to waste words before it’s time. But make us eager to jump right in when You give us the opportunity. May souls find their Savior today when hearts are ready and we are faithful.