Then he said to his disciples, “The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few.

Matthew 9:37 (NIV)

When Jesus sent out the twelve disciples to the people of Israel He told them to “‘proclaim this message: ‘The kingdom of heaven has come near.'” He also instructed them to “‘Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse those who have leprosy, [and] drive out demons.'” He reminded them “Freely you have received; freely give” (Matthew 10:5-8 NIV). Jesus also tells them, “If anyone will not welcome you or listen to your words, leave that home or town and shake the dust off your feet” (Matthew 10:14 NIV). What I wonder is in Jesus’ ‘If, then” statement is whether or not we’re falling short in it today. Are we “shaking the dust off” our feet before we give people the chance to listen to the Word?

When the Apostle Paul was preaching in Lystra he saw a man, crippled in his feet, listening, who had the faith to be healed, so Paul told him, “Stand up on your feet!” and the man stood up and was healed (Acts 14:10 NIV). We know that Paul was preaching the Gospel to this crowd that contained the man who couldn’t walk. We know that Paul wasn’t in the house of anyone prominent or particularly wealthy but speaking to a crowd in the city. I’d surmise that this crowd was made up of people who were well off as well as poor, like the man who couldn’t walk. What if Paul had decided, for whatever reason, to not talk to a crowd of mixed incomes? We know that it was Paul’s custom to always go and preach in a synagogue when he first arrived in a city. Therefore, he could have stayed there only preaching to the wealthy who were in attendance.

In the book of James, we are reminded to not show favoritism between those who are wealthy and those who are not. James asks us, “have you not discriminated among yourselves and become judges with evil thoughts” (James 2:4 NIV)? Surely, James wasn’t speaking only of favoring the rich over the poor. James may have been addressing an issue at the time, favoring those who were wealthy over those who were not, but the Spirit tells us to not show any favoritism.

What I shudder and think about is how often do we see someone and decide not to tell them the good news? We decide that they wouldn’t be receptive. Perhaps we know the person and because we think we know something about them we don’t talk to them. Perhaps the person has a “rough” exterior so we tell ourselves, “They wouldn’t listen anyway.” Maybe it’s someone who wears their sin where everyone can see and we think “They’re too far gone.” The worst situation that comes to my mind is that we just don’t feel like it. Whatever the reason, when we become “judges with evil thoughts” we are coming to conclusions based on something that is not of God.

I’m not saying that we all need to stop and talk to everyone. However, if the thought enters your mind not to talk to someone then that should be an enormous red flag to stop, think, and tell them whatever you were thinking not to tell them. Whatever it is that’s good, holy, and pure from God that the Holy Spirit has given to you is whatever you should say. Jesus tells us “The harvest is plentiful” and that tells me that there are loads of people out there who are ready to accept Him, but if no one asks them how can they accept?

Sometimes we’ll already be talking to someone when a “random” thought might come into our head like, “I wonder how her mother is doing?” It’s so random because we don’t know anything about the person, their mother, etc. so we dismiss it. I think there are a lot of Christians walking around and ignoring the Holy Spirit. Some of us do so because we don’t know the voice while others don’t want to listen to that voice.

I’m learning to rely more upon what I hear from the Holy Spirit and less upon my own reasoning each day. It takes trust and practice. When I was a little kid and my mom called me from down the road I heard her voice because I was attuned to it. No matter how engaged I was, as long as I was outside, I could hear her voice. I’ll confess that sometimes I lied and told her that I didn’t hear her but she knew. The trouble I got into for lying though, is nothing like the consequence of ignoring the Holy Spirit. I don’t know about you but I don’t want to stand before God one day and explain that I didn’t tell someone about Jesus because I didn’t feel like it.

Do you know God? God knows you and He loves you. He sees you as significant because you are. No one is insignificant to Him. He’s with you today, right now, and He wants you to know Him. Jesus died for your sins and mine so that we could be free of guilt, be freed from death, and live eternally with Him. Eternal salvation is just a prayer away.

Pray this prayer with me to accept the gift of salvation today:

Dear Lord Jesus, I know that I am a sinner, and I ask for Your forgiveness. I believe You died for my sins and rose from the dead. I turn from my sins and invite You to come into my heart and life. I want to trust and follow You as my Lord and Savior. Amen.

If you prayed that prayer then congratulations! You are on the first step of a brand new life. Allow me to be the first to welcome you to my family, the family of God. There are abundant resources available online for new Christians. You can visit here for more information on what to do next. You can also leave me a comment and I’ll do my best to help you on the next step of this incredible journey.