Treading Too Carefully
VERY few people play just a single game of Minesweeper. One turn is usually followed immediately by another because “I’ve got the hang of it now”.
Minesweeper used to come as a free game on personal computers and provided a quick flash of amusement to those meant to be working or doing homework.
Players are presented with a grid which they have to click on in order to reveal numbers that indicate how many “mines” are surrounding that number.
Squares which contain suspected mines can be “red flagged”. The idea is to reveal all the squares leaving only the red-flagged squares with mines in them.
Clicking on a mine means game over, as it triggers all the mines to erupt/reveal.
There is an instant nervousness which comes with this game. Does that square contain a mine? Should it be clicked on? What are the numbers indicating?
That same nervousness often grips us when it comes to sharing the Gospel with someone.
What will they say? What if now’s not the right time? What if they explode at being “clicked on”?
As we get to know a person, we reveal what they are like, their beliefs and tendencies, and we can end up red-flagging certain areas we believe are “no go” zones because it might trigger something.
Minesweeper has a time limit. You can stare at the grid all day, doubting, questioning, second-guessing, wondering what the exact right square is to click, and then the time runs out and all is lost anyway.
It is possible to tread too carefully.
It takes a bold approach to go forth and reveal the Good News of God’s love to a person.
We simply don’t know how long anyone has in this world. That should drive us to be confident in telling people about Christ despite the possibility of an explosion.
The Bible is full of examples of those who shared God’s message and had people blow up in their faces for hearing it (ie. John the Baptist, Phillip, Noah, Daniel).
Fear can hold us back from sharing but if every life has a time limit on it anyway, the need to talk to them about the way of salvation should override that fear.
Being bold in sharing your faith doesn’t mean being reckless of course. Paul urged his followers to be “wise in the way you act toward outsiders”.
Don’t hold back from talking to others about God for fear of a hidden mine.
The clock is ticking.
“And pray for us, too, that God may open a door for our message, so that we may proclaim the mystery of Christ, for which I am in chains. Pray that I may proclaim it clearly, as I should. Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity.”
- Colossians 4: 2-5.