I am thankful for stories like Charles Spurgeon’s conversion (if nothing else read the two paragraphs surrounding the bold “LOOK UNTO ME, AND BE YE SAVED, ALL THE ENDS OF THE EARTH.”). It shows God saves through preaching that is not that great.
I hope God has mercy on my evangelistic efforts. First, as a preacher, though I have seen God convert through my preaching, and think I am gifted by God for the task, every week I say things in ways I immediately Sunday afternoon pray God will have mercy on.
Second, as personal evangelist, I think I am bad. Not false humility– I am bad. I am shy to begin with. I let opportunities to make friends go by. I let opportunities to converse go by. I fear man often. I see opportunities to bring Jesus into discussions and I often let them go. Then, when God finally helps me get into conversations about the gospel, I mess up.
I believe God only uses the gospel to save souls. But, somehow I often get into debates, more than I proclaim good news. I just had a conversation today in which I know I shared gospel truth, but I know that person is coming away more mad at me than anything else. Maybe I was faithful and it is just persecution, but probably not. I pray for God to help me take more opportunities He gives me, help me to be more gospel-centered in my personal evangelism (imagine that!), and have mercy on that lady’s soul today and use that little gospel truth to save, despite my terrible evangelism.