I have worked outside our home and church for a large portion of our married life. And except for four years with Focus on the Family and three teaching in a Christian school, it has always been in the secular workplace. If you work in a secular workplace, you too may experience the same ambivalent feelings that I did for many years. My place of choice would always have been safe inside the walls of the church I love, but since circumstances forced me out there I longed to share God’s love with the unbelievers I met every day. Unfortunately, the only method I knew was to invite them to church.
I have this mental picture of me leaning out from the safe walls of my church building/life, waving to everyone, “I have Good News for you!” Is it any wonder nobody ever accepted my invitation?
I continued in my sincere desire to share God’s love, with the same fruitless results, until I learned to build relationships. I began to invest my life in the people I met. I had compartmentalized my life — This is me 40 hours a week with my co-workers, versus This is me after work with my family and my church. I hadn’t realized the two worlds could co-mingle. It took me a long time to realize I would never influence anyone for God’s Kingdom with my us/them mentality. That is why God commanded, “Go into the entire world and make disciples…” “Go into the highway and byways and compel them to come in.”
Because we invest so much of our time and resources into a church building or a church program, we have a hard time wrapping our brains around the truth that there isn’t anything intrincisally spiritual about them. Their only value is the truth of the message and the people who carry them.
As a pastor’s wife we are often happy living in our safe environment. We know church people. We understand them. For all their dysfunction, they are safe. But even pastors’ wives are called to the Great Commission, and most of us hide inside our churches, consumed with caring for the flock.
I challenge you to build one relationship with an unbeliever. It will be good for you, it may have eternal changes for them. My husband’s focus for years has been to train our people to recognize
that each person has a circle of influence –a group of people only they can influence for God.
Open your eyes. Ask God to point you to someone with whom you need to build a relationship. Remember these small important points:
1. Relationships take time. You will spend lots of hours with them without preaching. As
St. Francis said “Preach the word at all time, if necessary use words.”
2. This relationship is not an evangelistic campaign, i.e: attack and conquer, take a long view
and realize you’re in it for the long haul.
3. Enjoy yourself. This person will be a friend for life.
4. If you’re not sure where to start, look next door. Most of us have unsaved neighbors.
Scout out the coffee shop you frequent, the PTA, or the soccer mom on your kid’s team.
Copyright 2009 Brynwood Publishing, All Rights Reserved
2 Replies to “Reaching Out”
One of the biggest test of my Christian walk was returning to work after 20 years of being a fulltime Pastor’s Wife and Stay at Home Mom. I honestly went into a state of shock. I work as an educational administrator in an environment where several of the staff have no personal relationship with Jesus and two of the teachers do not believe in the Bible, Jesus or God. My biggest concern was that these people are working with children. Therefore, my husband and I pray each morning prior to me leaving the house. We have even gone to the school and prayed on the weekends. It has been very difficult to evaluate these people based on their peformance and not their beliefs. I have in no way been ashamed of the gospel and have managed to let my light shine in the midst of demonic spirits. However, you are correct in saying that we are so comfortable in our church environments. We need training for returning to the secular to serve. For it is definitely ministry in action!
Praise the Lord,
• Evangelism and church planting among unreached rural and tribal people in south India.
My name is Raghava Rao. I Pastor Raghava Rao and my wife Venkayamma are bible lovers. We have been married for over 13 years now and have no children. Raghava Rao earned my Bachelor Degree in Mathematics from Andhra Christian College in Guntur, South India. Mrs. Venkayamma studied Social Work in Stella Mari’s collage in Chennai, India.
We have dedicated our lives and service to Jesus Christ and in his church.
In obedience to the Great Commission, we serve with an aim to reach the un reached people in Sattenapalli taluk, Guntur District, Andhra Pradesh South India. Pastor Gathram Raghava Rao’s vision and commitment for spread the Kingdom of God lord Jesus. Raghava Rao lost his Father when he was Eight year old and was raised in a Christian home which gave shelter to
both orphan and needy children.
We have been sharing the gospel door-to-door and holding prayer and worship services in the villages. We have already seen 112 families accept Christ and be baptized. In this area, most people are animist, which means they believe that a soul or spirit exists in every object, even if it is inanimate.
• We have small church in the town with thatched/Leaves. We want to construct the Church for people of Bible lovers to come and pray. We are seeking some little money as contribution to build church. (Contribution is needed to build church is $10000 US. If you give $100- it is useful to build church. )
• Fellow ship for us.
• We are in need of small vehicle Or Auto rickshaw to go to villages and spread the Gospel of Jesus Christ. (Contribution is needed $3500 US)
Through this project we have the opportunity to make a tremendous difference for the Kingdom of God. I hope you will help in the name of Jesus Christ.
Through your sponsorship, you can help equip these pastors to lead these people to Christ, and can encourage the children and their families in their faith through your correspondence.
We remain in the name of Jesus Christ.
Gathram Raghava Rao,Pastor,
Sattenapalli (Post & Taluka),
Andhra Pradesh, India.