Last week the DTS went to Cardiff for an exciting week of Evangelism. Tyler, one of the DTS trainees, shares some of his personal experiences/thoughts from that week:
“Leaving Carlisle Sunday morning we ventured six hours to the south-western portion of England entering Wales. We spent the entire last week in Cardiff with three other DTS programs from England and a school of evangelism, which is also run through YWAM. 80 of us inhabited a local church and there was a strong feeling of community even though none of us new each other that well. I believe it’s this sense of community rooted in love for God that He so desires for our lives. Community that is established in relationship with Him is so unique and that experience alone would have made the week but God had so much more in store.
A man named Yan Nicholls spoke throughout the week but he made it clear that our time was going to be focused on sharing what we say we believe. The intentions of the week were to take what we say we believe and do it. I have stated with my lips that I want to love God, surrender my soul to Him and to allow His will to be done in my life. But rarely in my past have I given Him that opportunity. So the challenge I faced was to take the time in our schedule for ministry and hit the streets. Street Evangelism…. Prior to this week I had a lot of doubts about this practice. My biggest struggle with street evangelism was not establishing my identity in Christ and holding on to this fear of man. Having both of those present have an impacting effect on me, these traits silence me. When I asked myself why I don’t share my beliefs in God with others, I would always come to the conclusion that I was afraid of how people would perceive me. There were two things that struck my heart in the early stages of the week that motivated me. The first was a result of a video blog by an atheist. He made the statement,”If you truly believe in a heaven and a hell how much do you have to hate someone in order not to tell them.” Another factor that pushed me was the living experience that I have had with God’s love and how it has changed me. I began to desire to share my experience with others and be a voice for Christ’s love.
Even with this new found revelation there was still one barrier that held me back. It was an internal struggle with establishing the effectiveness of street evangelism. I would discount this form of loving others because of the brief interaction, thinking it would not make much a difference in a persons life. As I look back, there is so much wrong with that thought process. If I perceive street evangelism with the objective to convert people to Christianity then I have it entirely wrong. Street evangelism is the active statement of surrendering our own comforts to God. It is a demonstration of our desire to be servants for Christ. Our motivation is not to earn God’s love but to respond to His love. It should be a natural reaction to give others the opportunity to be blessed as we have been blessed by Christ’s love.
With this in mind, I always remind myself, God being God, He has no need for us but He gives us the privilege of serving Him and make Him known. Our purpose here on earth is to just receive the divine love of our Heavenly Father and to be givers of this divine love. This is what I believe street evangelism is all about, stepping outside our own comfort zones to love others. I was blessed last week to see God take small amounts of courage possessed by my team-mates and strengthen their faith through blessing the interactions they had with strangers. The growth I have witnessed in myself and my team-mates continues to nurture the excitement in how God will use us in South Africa.”