I have traveled the world and found people on every continent who pray. It is a fact that there are a growing number of people who do not believe in any sort of god; this is an alarmingly large group. But still, the majority of people believe in something. They seem to know that someone out there is bigger and more powerful than they are.
If you ever find yourself getting nowhere when you are witnessing to someone, try sharing some answers to prayer. People who pray want their prayers answered. Even people who are not in dire distress would like to find what seems to them the magic formula. Of course, we know that prayer is not a matter of getting God to do what we want Him to do but rather one of God getting us to do what He wants us to do. But the topic of answered prayer can open up an opportunity to explain the gospel.
I was on a plane going to the East Coast. It was a long flight, and I was just settling down to read when the well-dressed man by my side said, “It’s hot in here. I can’t wait to get to my house on the beach.” He then proceeded to tell me all about this house and that house of his, this boat and that boat, this vacation and that vacation. It was going to be a very long flight! Then it was as if the Lord nudged me and said, “Tell him about Me.” He wouldn’t be interested, Lord,” I replied confidently. “Haven’t you noticed, he’s a self-made man who worships his creator!” “True,” the Lord replied, “but how do you know he wouldn’t worship Me instead of himself if he ever got to hear the truth?”
Let me pause just long enough to point out that this inner conversation I was having with the Lord was prayer. I was having a dialog with the Almighty. This sort of praying is like a conversation in your mind. I love this sort of conversation with God. This kind of prayer can go on all day long.
The man on the plane talked happily about himself almost all the way to our destination. I listened as well as I could, figuring he would have to run out of words and give me a turn! At last he turned to me and said, “And what do you do?” I was delighted to tell him and in the course of my explanation managed to explain why I do what I do.
“Well,” he responded, “some people need God, but my life is just fine as it is.”
“Wouldn’t you like it to be better?” I asked.
“Everyone would like it to be better,” he conceded, “however good they have it.”
“Then let me tell you how it could be better.”
Talking very fast as we began to land, I recounted true stories of answered prayer. “Do you mind my asking you if you pray?” I ventured to inquire as we collected our things.
“Not very often,” he admitted.
“Life will be better even than it is when you do.”
“I wouldn’t know where to start.”
“Start at the beginning,” I suggested.
As we walked down to the baggage claim area, I told him where the beginning was. He would need to examine the Christian’s claims about Jesus, stop wavering between two opinions, and make a decision one way or another. In essence, I told him, “If the Lord be God, then serve Him, but if Baal (or the mighty dollar), then serve him.” He left then. But I pray on for him whenever the Lord brings him to mind. I pray that one day he will pray a prayer of faith and, finding that prayer works, give his life to the Lord. Yes, people really do believe that any gods worth their salt will be able to answer their people’s prayers. And when people see prayers answered, they are often willing to cast their vote for the God who did the answering.
Jill Briscoee planned for Jeremiah, Moses, Abraham, David, Matthew, Mark, L
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