6 Ways to Avoid Missed Opportunities
One of the most asked questions we hear at EvanTell is, “How can I find more opportunities to share the gospel?” With the continued decline of personal interaction these days, the challenge seems greater than ever.
One of the keys to unlock more gospel opportunities is to recognize the opportunities you may be missing. Jesus alludes to this in John 4:35, where He tells His disciples, “Behold, I say to you, lift up your eyes and look at the fields, for they are already white for harvest!”
Here are 6 ways to recognize the opportunities for the gospel that you may be overlooking in your life.
1. Get in sync with the Lord first thing each day.
God is always at work and invites us to join Him in what He is doing in the lives of others. The problem is that many of us are not tuned in to sense His leading. A great way to get in sync with the Lord is to begin each day saturating our minds with His word, basking in His presence in worship, and communicating with Him in prayer. Doing this will get us on the same frequency as the Lord in the following ways. It will:
- Prioritize God’s agenda in our minds
- Align our hearts with God’s heart for others
- Open our eyes to the opportunities around us
- Sharpen our sensitive to the Holy Spirit’s leading
- Provide boldness that flows from our joy in the Lord
2. Address sin in your life ASAP.
Sin dulls us to the things of God, including opportunities to share about Him. It turns our attention inward, causing spiritual nearsightedness where we only focus on ourselves. The solution is found in 1 John 1:9, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” Confession is not a once a day event, but a continual process throughout our day. If we want to clearly see the opportunities God gives, we need to confess the sins that disrupt our fellowship with Him.
3. Pay attention.
Sometimes we miss opportunities simply because they are not top of mind. 1 Peter 1:13 says, “Therefore, preparing your minds for action, and being sober-minded, set your hope fully on the grace that will be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ.” In other words, focus on what will matter in the long run, including sharing the hope of Christ with others. A great way to do this is to set goals. For example, “This week, I’m going to talk to three people about Christ.” Opportunities are much more evident when we are looking for them.
4. Increase your margin.
Sometimes we don’t take advantage of opportunities or pursue them because we don’t have the time. We are tempted to fill schedules so full there is little margin for extra. If this is you, perform a calendar audit to make room for unexpected opportunities. The key is what to take out of your schedule. Another strategy is to limit the time you spend on your phone. A noted poet said it best, “Things that matter most must never be at the mercy of things that matter least.”
5. Focus on others.
As you go about your day, make others a priority, even when you are busy. Sometimes small gestures can turn into large opportunities. Extending a smile might initiate a conversation. A random act of kindness might start a friendship. A listening ear might establish trust. Ask yourself, “How do you like to be treated by others?” Then put into practice with others what you write down concerning yourself.
6. Don’t let a missed opportunity keep you from the next opportunity.
Sometimes, we may miss an opportunity to share the gospel then kick ourselves for missing the “might have been.” However, if we dwell too long on what might have been, we can miss out on what is happening now. If that happens to you, ask the Lord to teach you what you need to know about that missed opportunity, then move on to the next one. As Entrepreneur Richard Branson points out, “Opportunities are like buses. There is always another one coming.”
Regarding opportunities, Paul sums it up best in Ephesians 5:16-17: “Make the most of every opportunity in these evil days. Don’t act thoughtlessly, but understand what the Lord wants you to do.” In other words, focus on the Lord and the assignments He brings your way where you can make a difference in the lives of others.
PO Box 703929
Dallas, TX 75370-3929