Do you understand the difference between urgent and important?
Best-selling author, James Clear, writes, “How long will you delay what’s important to you just so that you can handle the next urgent thing in front of you? How long will you put off what you’re capable of doing just to maintain what you’re currently doing? … Too often we live our lives based on what is urgent for us and not what is important to us. It’s dangerously easy to spend years constantly chasing the next urgent thing and never setting aside time to do what we know we should.”*
Here’s an example of something in my life that is important, but I’ve allowed it to become urgent. I only respond to it as an emergency. Watering plants. If watering plants is important, you do it regularly, routinely. You don’t wait until your plants turn brown or wilt sadly and then soak them (probably with too much water, not that I’ve done that).
What about evangelism? Is evangelism important or urgent? Evangelism means “good message.” See the word “angel” in it?
Angels are God’s messengers and servants. Angels tend to you and protect you all day every day, not just in nearly-but-not-fatal car accidents that could have gone really, really bad. Their work is important, not just urgent. Everyday.
Like angels, we are God’s messengers and servants. Unfortunately, we let evangelism (telling the good message about Jesus to others and inviting them to connect with church) become urgent. Only an emergency.
Jim called me from the hospital. “Pastor, can you come and visit my dad? He doesn’t have much time and I want to be sure he’ll be in heaven.”
I had never met his dad, and asked, “Does your dad believe in Jesus?”
“I don’t think so.”
“Jim, have you talked to him about Jesus?”
Pause. “Umm … I don’t think so.” That’s because it wasn’t important, but now all of a sudden it was urgent.
Don’t wait until plants or people are dying to save them.
“As God’s co-workers we urge you not to receive God’s grace in vain. For he says, ‘In the time of my favor I heard you, and in the day of salvation I helped you.’ I tell you, now is the time of God’s favor, now is the day of salvation” (2 Corinthians 6:1,2).
Tell people about Jesus. It’s not just urgent, it’s important, everyday, all the time.
PRAYER: God, at some time, someone told me about Jesus and now I’m a believer. You want me to do the same thing for others. Open my eyes to see them, and my heart to speak to them. Now, and often. Amen.
EVANGELISM ACTION: Make a mental list of 3 people in your life who don’t yet believe in Jesus or go to church. Talk to them about Jesus. Maybe start by talking about plants, or angels?
*James Clear https://jamesclear.com/are-you-living-an-urgent-life-or-an-important-one. Retrieved August 4, 2022.