God has set before every local church two journeys for the sake of his glory. First is the journey of sanctification; that each individual Christian member of that church should grow more and more Christ-like, more and more holy, more and more knowledgeable of scripture, more and more faith-filled, more and more loving to God and to one another, more and more obedient to his commands.

Second is the journey of Kingdom advancement; that the church should spread the Gospel of Jesus Christ more and more to the lost, both in local evangelism and in missions to the end of the earth. Every local church is called by the Great Commission (Matthew 28:19-20) to these two journeys. Progress in each is very hard, and can only be done by the power of the Holy Spirit. And they are absolutely intertwined. We cannot make progress in sanctification without being active in evangelism and missions; and we will not continue to be active in evangelism and missions if we are not growing in holiness. The local church exists to glorify God by making continual progress in both of these journeys. And Satan fights us every step of the way. God has gifted some people in particular with the gift of evangelism —not only that they are sharing their faith, but that they are unusually bold and fruitful in this, and they are excellent leaders and mentors to others in that church who are weak in the area of outreach.

Our church has been richly blessed by many godly people who have this gift. They have motivated me, strengthened me, set a good example for me… and not only for me but for all that know them! While every Christian is called on to evangelize, those with this spiritual gift greatly empower others toward skill and faithfulness in this responsibility. I would be far less active and far less fruitful in evangelism if it weren’t for these gifted church members. So, pray for God to raise up people with the gift of evangelism who will take on the role of “evangelist” in your local church. This will unleash the whole church membership in far greater fruitfulness than you have ever seen before.

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