While contemplating the missional task that is set before every follower of Jesus, I was deeply moved by this story. It brings an age-old question into specific relief. If we truly understand the scope and magnitude of the sacrifice of Jesus Christ on our behalf, how is it that we are able to contain ourselves from sharing the gospel at every opportunity afforded us? This is, for all practical purposes, a rhetorical question and any thoughtful Christian will unfortunately know the answer. We should not be able to contain ourselves. Either we don’t fully grasp the sacrifice of Christ or we are lazy. Regardless, we are disobedient. I am disobedient. Here is the story from Evangelism Handbook by Alvin Reid.
Imagine for a moment that you have a small child, a little girl. She is playing in the road, unnoticed by you. Your neighbor Bill looks up from his yard work, only to see a tractor trailer bearing down on your daughter. Bill runs to the scene, pushing your child to safety just in time. She is scratched and scared but unhurt. But Bill was not so lucky. He awoke the next day in a hospital bed to the diagnosis that he would never walk again.
How would you feel about Bill? Would you not rush to the hospital to thank him, to ask him if there were anything you could do for him? Suppose you did visit him, and he said, “No, thanks, but I’m OK. My family is here. I will make out all right.”
But then suppose he looked at you and said, “There is one thing you can do for me. Would you mind telling just five people over the next several years about my actions to save your daughter? It would mean a lot to my family.”
You would probably respond to Bill, “I have already told everyone I have met about what you have done! I will speak of you for the rest of my life!” The Old Testament showed us our need for a Savior and it pointed the way for Him. Now that we know Him and thinking of all He endured for us, can we truly be silent?
“…we cannot stop speaking about what we have seen and heard.” Acts 4:20
We cannot be silent. We must not be silent.