I found the story about Selwyn’s experience in the mines, to be very instructive.
It’s important to realise that while we might miss an opportunity to share our faith with someone – God is still in control; and the final destination of any one person does not depend on our actions – it’s all between the person and God. The experience Selwyn had – was primarily a lesson for Selwyn’s benefit – and that is, don’t disobey a spiritual prompting.
In his introduction, Selwyn writes: “George Barna, a Christian researcher, once said that seven out of ten Christians who share their faith with others come away feeling they have failed. The fear of failure is one of the chief reasons why people fail to share their faith.”
God’s strength shines through our weaknesses – we share our faith in an imperfect way; God takes our words and turns them into a perfect message of truth.
My conversion started with the following words, spoken to me by a person I was just getting to know. I was talking to him about certain traumatic events in my life, he said: “They probably happened because Jesus loves you.” The words: “Jesus loves you.” Invaded my spirit, and set me free – in a rather dramatic way. After I had given my life to Jesus, I went back – a few weeks later, and thanked my friend for saying such powerful words – however, he had forgotten that he had said them. The point I’m making, is that Jesus can use your words and empower them to change people’s lives.
I’ve found the verse from Peter’s first letter to be great advice, 1 Peter 3:15 (NIV): “Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone … for the hope that you have.”