Fishers of Men Part 4
Strong and Courageous
September 7, 2018
We are continuing the journey of a seeker‘s pathway to faith this week. The story goes like this. Okay, I have a friend that is in good trust with me in relationship and is becoming curious about Jesus, what is next?
This is the next stage in the parable of the farmer and the seed. Where a person begins to consider the life change involved in becoming a Christian. Usually this is a fairly brief but intense period of time. Aspects of peer pressure are often in play. What would my family and/or friends think of me if I were to become a Christian? Indecision of on and off are likened unto a light switch in the mind of the seeker at this point. Switch on, switch off, the intensity is real. That is why a person generally cannot stay in this indecision for a very long period. Don Everts in his book titled I Once was Lost describes the difficulty at this stage. “One reason this part of the journey is so difficult is that it dawns on our friends that they need to see the world in a new light. Questioning your own worldview and contemplating the Christian perspective for yourself is revolutionary. It can mean coming to terms with deep-seated dissatisfactions and unanswered questions and disappointments. It can even mean contemplating death and the afterlife.”
So, how can we be good friends and farmers for these people? I think it helps to understand that this is a time where we need to be patient as the journey unfolds. We need to be sensitive to heart felt questions that they may have. Being a sounding board can be helpful for them as they often feel quite alone. A helpful question to ask is, what about giving God a trial run? In addition, what would that look like? In any event, they need to know that we are their friend, regardless of what they decide.
This is also a very special time to be lifting up our friends in intercessory prayer. This is a spiritual battle all the way. Many can just be stuck at this stage and never go farther. Prayer specifically generated to help them get unstuck is important.
Finally, we should ask probing and challenging questions about how open they can become to change. Some may say that they are very open, but it may not be the case. They may need help to see this for what it is. Excuses and fears should be seen as potential defeaters and not be glossed over. We should not do this in a judgmental fashion, but rather as a good friend giving much needed advice. Sometimes this action alone can tip the scale for a person to proceed forward.