BEING FLEXIBLE TO MEET VARIOUS NEEDS
No one can assure you that in any gospel situation there will not be problems. You may ask a person, “Are you a Christian?” He may respond to you with, “I don’t like Christianity.” Many answer in this way. Then what should you do? You have to learn how to shift to another subject. You may tell someone that you are a Christian, and he may respond with, “That’s your problem.” Then you could say to him, “Yes, this is my problem. But, sir, we all have to realize our whole human life is a problem. Is there a human being without a problem? Having a wife is a problem. Not having a wife is also a problem. Having children is a problem. Not having children is also a problem. Having money is a problem. Not having money is also a problem. In our human life, everything is a problem.” This kind of practical talk should convince him. He may not admit it, but in his heart he will be convinced. Then from this point you can turn to the mystery of human life. “So, sir, human life is a mystery. We do not know where we came from, and we do not know where we will go. None of us knows how long we will live.” This kind of normal speaking will open a wide field for you to preach the gospel.
One brother related an experience of going with some other brothers to visit a man who had come from mainland China. The brothers first talked to him a little bit about the situation in China. This opened him up. Then they tried to preach the gospel to him. When they brought out the booklet The Mystery of Human Life, he became very defensive, saying that he was an atheist. He believed absolutely in communism, and he did not want them to say anything about religion and things of that nature. He said they could talk about anything else but not that subject. Later, he mentioned that he was trying to learn certain aspects about computers. What he was trying to learn happened to be the field of one of the brothers. This caused him to open more and invite them to come again. But the brothers began to wonder if it was really worthwhile to go back to see him again since he told them that he was an atheist.
It is definitely worthwhile to go back to see such a person. His talk has opened a very wide gate for him to be gained. But when the brothers go to him the next time, they should only talk about computer hardware and software. Later, there will be a proper time for the gospel. It may be the third or fourth time. The brothers have to wait for a chance. If there is a little crack, the living water can get in. They can then take advantage of that little crack to speak the gospel.
We must go to practice preaching the gospel with much patience by having a spirit to learn, to be discipled. John 15 tells us that we were chosen to bear fruit (v. 16). Then we need to be discipled in order to bear more fruit (v. 8).
(The Exercise and Practice of the God-Ordained Way, Chapter 12, by Witness Lee)