BEST OF TQFG: Be politely persistent in delivering God’s message.

We hope you enjoy this re-post from June 14, 2013. Be blessed! The Today’s Quote From God Team

We love him, because he first loved us. – 1 John 4:19, KJV

In his book Follow Me, David Platt recounts the following story:

When Heather and I arrived in Kazakhstan to adopt Caleb, we were met at the airport by a young woman named Vitalina. She was our translator for the next four weeks, going everywhere with us during our time in Caleb’s city. After we met her, she directed Heather and me to a taxi, where we all took our seats for the ride to the orphanage.

“What kind of work do you do?” Vitalina asked me.

“I’m a pastor,” I said.

She responded bluntly, “A pastor? Why are you a pastor? Don’t you know that there is no such thing as God? God is for the weak.”

I smiled and replied, “That’s true. I am weak, and God is strong. He has done something for me and in me that I could never have done myself.”

This was the beginning of daily conversations with Vitalina about who God is and how God loves. Every opportunity we had, Heather and I shared about how God had loved us enough to adopt us as his children through Christ, and how that love was now the motivation behind our desire to adopt Caleb. Over that four-week span, Vitalina listened to us constantly talk about the faithful pursuit of a God who comes to us in our weakness and captivates us with his love.

Then it happened. It was our last night in Caleb’s city, and we were preparing to board our plane. After we had received our tickets and loaded our luggage, Vitalina pulled me aside. “I need to tell you something,” she said.

“Okay,” I replied, “what is it?”

“Last night, I realized that God does exist, and I recognized that he had sent you all here in his pursuit of me.” She continued, “He has done something for me and in me that I never could have imagined. Last night, I repented of my sin and became a follower of Jesus.” Then she said with excitement, “Now I am a child of God!

(Excerpt From: Platt, David. Follow Me. Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., 2013-02-05. iBooks.)

Platt’s point in telling this story is found in the following five key words spoken by Vitalina: “in his pursuit of me.” Born-again believers most definitely have a role in their salvation. They must choose to accept God’s free gift of salvation. However, we often forget that the reason we even have the opportunity to make that choice is because God diligently pursued us in order to give us that choice. As Platt so eloquently points out in Follow Me, no earthly adopted child pursues his parents for adoption. The parents pursue the child. The child, if old enough, may choose whether or not to accept adoption, but the offer to adopt always comes from the parents.

For whatever reason, God has seen fit to include human beings in the pursuit of His adopted children. Each and every one of us has the tremendous privilege and the weighty duty of pursuing others with the Gospel of Christ. We need to consider that “to pursue” something or someone means “to follow in order to overtake or capture” (Merriam Webster’s Dictionary). We often pat ourselves on the back when we gin up enough courage to give the Gospel one time to someone, but a “one and done” attitude would not have won Vitalina, and it would not have resulted in many of us being won to Christ either.

Granted, we will not have the opportunity to give the Gospel repeatedly to many of the people we meet. In such cases, we should be content to give the Gospel once, trusting that God will continue the pursuit through the faithfulness of some of His other children. But there will be those in our lives with whom we can repeatedly share the Gospel, and we ought to be prepared to do so when the opportunities arise. The Platts exposed Vitalina to God regularly for a month. I have a dear friend who chose God after faithful witnesses pursued him for over two years. I have two other dear friends who chose God after a faithful witness pursued them for over five years. And how many times did God have to pursue us before we understood the wonder of the gift He was offering us?

Sometimes – arguably most of the time – it takes faithful witnesses repeatedly sharing the Gospel to win souls to Christ. How faithful have you been in pursuing those lost souls that God has assigned to you?

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