“Keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life. And of some have compassion, making a difference: And others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire; hating even the garment spotted by the flesh.”Jude 21-23
Rebekah and I had a pastor who counseled, married, taught and allowed us our real first ministry experience. I was 22 years old when we first met him, and God used him in our life to teach us many things. We had a small church, but the pastor was outgoing and he was willing to teach and disciple. I had grown up in church my whole life, but there was much I still needed to learn and put into practice. I was eager to get going in ministry, and I wanted to be used of God.
Our pastor had a burden for souls like I had never seen, and he would give anyone and everyone a gospel tract. There were times I rode in the car with him and he would cut across all lanes to give someone a tract. I never felt safe with him in the driver’s seat as I didn’t know what sudden stop or sharp turn we would be taking.
He had a goal to lead one person a day to Jesus, and he would go to gas stations, people’s doors, and witness in the airport without having a flight to catch. I was even sitting in the steam sauna at the gym with him one day when he started giving me the gospel so the others in the sauna could hear. I am not sure how many days this went on, but God was certainly using him. I saw many people go forward for salvation and many new people visit our church because our pastor was willing to share the good news. He looked at others with compassion, and he wanted God to use him to make a difference for eternity.
I have always wanted to make a difference in others’ lives ever since I was a little boy. I used to say, “I don’t want to walk in the footsteps of others, but I want to create footsteps that others will walk in.” It sounds kind of silly to me now and my sister laughed at me for it then, but I was a dreamer. I can think of no better way to make a difference in this world then to point others to Jesus Christ. No one can make a difference like Him, and a relationship with Him is life changing. We need to share the love of Christ and the eternal consequences of rejecting Him. We need to be burdened for our fellow man, and we need to do all we can “…pulling them out of the fire.”
Who in your life needs Jesus Christ? For whom do you need to have compassion today? Are you praying for others to enter into the kingdom or are you bogged down with other things in this life that will pass away? Have you lost your burden for others? Time is running out, and we must remain diligent to be the witness God would have us to be. May we make a difference for eternity, and may we have compassion for others like someone had for us.