“Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity. Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.”
—Colossians 4:5-6 (NASB)
“Do you have a driver’s license for that thing? Ha! Ha!” My wheelchair elicits lots of comments. I’m surprised how many people initiate communication with me. I really don’t mind. In fact, I love it. Usually, the ambassador of Christ is the one who must jumpstart conversations, hoping to engage the interest of the other. That’s hardly the case with me. The wheelchair does the “initiating.” I merely sit back and respond.
People don’t expect me to look happy sitting in a wheelchair. Saying “I have a reason for living” in response to their remarks about my singing or my smile always evokes a curious look. That’s when I add, “Jesus has blessed me! By the way, what’s your reason for living?” Sure it catches people off guard, sometimes delighting them, sometimes making them curious, and sometimes sending them running for the nearest exit. But one thing’s for certain… it’s got them thinking!
The truth is I’ve never heard of one certain style of giving the Gospel that was a sure-fire success. I’ve learned that it has a lot more to do with the Holy Spirit’s work in a person’s heart than it does with a certain tool or technique. And so we do the best we can, grabbing a bit of opportunity here, nurturing a conversation there, sprinkling it with prayer, seasoning it with our testimony… and leaving the results to God
Friend, quit looking for a “guaranteed” method of sharing the Gospel. Just ask the Holy Spirit to fill you, and tell him you’re ready and available to touch the life of another. Then start sprinkling the conversational salt! Believe me, thirsty souls will be drawn to the Living Water.
Joni Eareckson Tada is one of the world’s leading international advocates for people affected by disability. A diving accident in 1967 left her, then 17, a quadriplegic in a wheelchair. After two years of rehabilitation, she emerged with new skills and a fresh determination to help others in similar situations. She founded Joni and Friends in 1979 and has written over 50 books, including her best-selling autobiography, Joni, which was made into a feature film. She and her husband Ken were married in 1982 and reside in California.