A Bus Ride That Takes An Unexpected Turn

Tuesday: Fourth Week of Lent
John 12:37-50

What are some interesting interactions you’ve had with strangers?

It was going to be a three-hour bus ride. I sat down by myself and hoped it would stay that way. Just as we were about to leave the bus terminal, one more person got on the bus. Sure enough, he sat down right beside me.

Even though I still wanted to be alone, I started feeling guilty about my selfish attitude. I prayed, “Lord, if you want me to speak to this person, get him to say the first words.”

A few minutes later, the man picked up his book and started reading. I thought, “This is good.”

Then, it happened. The man put his book down and looked at me. His very first words to me were, “So, what do you think about God?”

For the next three hours, I had the opportunity to listen to and share the gospel with my new, unsaved friend—someone who was obviously seeking truth.

In the reading, we see that some of the Jewish leaders believed in Jesus (12:42). Yet, they refused to share their faith because they were afraid of getting kicked out of the synagogue.

In my experience, fear is one of the main reasons why I sometimes don’t share my faith. I’m afraid of what people might think. I’m afraid of awkwardness and conflict. Of course, sometimes I’m just selfish and don’t really care about the other person.

Yet, there is one thing that conquers fear and selfishness—love. If I really love someone, I am much more likely to help them. Obviously, I need to help people with their physical needs when I can. Yet, my highest calling is to help them take faith steps towards the One who took our place on the cross—the One who died and rose again so that we might have a deeply satisfying life both now and forever.

Jesus’ love compels me to love others, even strangers on a bus.

What are some of the fears that keep you from sharing your faith? How might Christ’s love help you overcome those fears?


Randy Wollf is Associate Professor of Leadership and Practical Theology and Director of MinistryLift at MB Seminary and is a part of South Langley MB Church in Langley, BC.

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