Making Evangelism Personal

Day 3 of 6 • This day’s reading


Caring About What People Care About 

Nothing shows what we care about more clearly than how we spend our time. Time is a precious gift—one we cannot get back once it’s given. In today’s account of Jesus, we see His compassion in action and His willingness to make it personal: He uses His time to care about what someone else cares about. 

A desperately hopeful father interrupts Jesus in the middle of a serious lesson on fasting:

While he was saying this, a synagogue leader came and knelt before him and said, “My daughter has just died. But come and put your hand on her, and she will live.” Matthew 9:18 NIV

Clearly, this man is in desperate need of Jesus.

We understand that desperation from his willingness to approach Jesus in the first place. For the most part, the religious leaders of the day were anti-Jesus, because He called them out publicly for the ways they used their power to take advantage of people. But this father had just lost his daughter. She was dead. So he had no other option than to humble himself before Jesus, admitting his need and hoping Jesus would choose to help. 

Here’s what Jesus did not do. He didn’t say, “Oh, bummer, I’m so sorry. I’ll be praying for you.” Nor did He get annoyed by the interruption of His teaching. He didn’t even sit there and heal the girl from afar, though He could have! Instead, He immediately stopped the sermon, got up, and followed the man to his home. Jesus chose to use His time to show love in this situation. Simply put, Jesus cared about what this man cared about. And He backed it with action.

Remember, this is how people are able to tell that we follow Jesus: by how we love. In fact, Jesus literally said: “By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another” (John 13:35 NIV). A really simple way to demonstrate this love is by taking an interest in what’s important to someone else and backing it with action. Like Jesus did. 

Challenge: How can you step into someone else’s world today? It could be as simple as asking them how a particular hobby or activity is going and actively and intentionally listening to their answer. Maybe you can show up at their next baseball game or open mic to support them. Get creative and lead with love!