Yes dad shot the can. Years ago when I was so young. Two would-be-hunters. No ‘luck’… not even a Kill-Dee was seen. Yet years later… reflection. Just sitting here… thinking about that old can. I think it was an apple juice can… maybe tomato juice… who cares, right? Yet back then and throughout a ministry, it meant so much more. Now… it still intrigues me. Maybe you have shot a can before… maybe a bottle… but did you stop and think what lessons could be learned?
1. Watch what you shoot at! If you mean to hit a can… hit it! Soul winning is a very special work. It’s almost like open heart surgery. It’s not about winning a battle or proving someone right and going out bragging on how great you did. It is wholly about caring enough to share the word of God in a way that is gently firm. Almost like…. well it’s hard to say what it is like. But just imagine yourself on the other side. Every ‘stroke’ of the spiritual ‘knife’, just think… don’t be in a hurry… sometimes it means simply taking more time… more patience… more prayer for sure… Try again…. find the real problem why a person is holding back, and apporach it from the “needs” angle. Shot-gun approaches tend to hit (damage) things not really important. You don’t have to deal with “instrumental music” (whatever your position), to bring one to Christ.
2. Make as little damage as you can in this process… I know this is related to the previous thing. But of course when trying to win a soul, you have to (with the Word) and wisdom, remove a ‘problem’. How it is done is as important as the ‘doing’ of it. One man who had attended many services and heard many sermons… finally he obeyed the gospel and was truly happy. When asked why he waited so long, he replied, “Well, other preachers got up and taught pretty much the same thing as this preacher did. The big difference was this man was truly sorry I was lost…. and the others seemed like they were glad.” Somehow, there is more involved here than just teaching truth…. it involves CARING FOR THE LOST. This simpy cannot be hidden. Cannot be faked.
A person, even though lost may not be all wrong… Remember, ‘the less damage done = the less repairs need to be done.”
3. Be careful of a ‘one shot’ approach, which may shut the door for others to approach this person. Be a door opener, an interest creator, a bridge builder….
This doesn’t mean compromise truth by any means. It means speak truth in love for sure, but if you know you are never going to see this person again…. try to do something, say something which doesn’t close the door of the lost person’s heart for others who may ‘bump into’ this person and have an opportunity to spend more time in teaching. Remember even though you may plant, someone else waters, and God gives the increase… So what if you don’t get the credit (here)….
This is a growing article. Just wondering if you wanted to participate? If you have some ideas, feel free to share… What do you learn from the ‘can’?