“The harvest truly is great, but the laborers are few; therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest.” (Luke 10:2)
We’ve been talking this week about “6 Ways to Pray as You Evangelize” using the acronym L.O.B.S.S.S. Today we take a deeper look at the letter “L”—laborers.
In the Gospel account of Luke, Jesus gave instructions to 70 appointed followers about to be sent out. Interestingly, He prefaced his instructions with a comment on the plentiful nature of the harvest and a request to pray for laborers.
The organization “National Back to Church Sunday” offers some enlightening stats on the nature of the harvest and its laborers in America today. It seems most people come to church because of a personal invitation, and “Eighty-two percent of the unchurched are at least somewhat likely to attend church if invited."
Thom Rainer (president and CEO of Lifeway Christian Resources) has interviewed thousands of non-Christians over the years. In an article for Outreach Magazine called “What Non-Christians Really Think about Christians,” he suggests some interesting things.
Notably, he asserts that non-Christians are looking for friendships with Christians and use a quote from a non-Christian as an example:
I’m really interested in what they believe and how they carry out their beliefs. I wish I could find a Christian that would be willing to spend some time with me.
Rainer also suggests that unchurched people want to learn more about Christianity from Christians and quotes another non-Christian:
The Bible really fascinates me, but I don’t want to go to a stuffy and legalistic church to learn about it. I would be nice if a Christian invited me to study the Bible in his home or at a place like Starbucks.
This suggests to me that people are more open to hearing the gospel than we might think. Yet, according to National Back to Church Sunday, only 2% of church goers invite an unchurched friend to attend, and 7 out of 10 unchurched people have never been invited to church. More people seem open to spiritual conversations than there are believers looking to start them.
What do you pray for the most? Family? Friends? Success at your job? Finances?
Whatever you pray for indicates where your heart lies. If our hearts care for the lost, then our prayers should reflect that. If we aren’t praying for unbelievers, that may be an indication that our hearts need tuning.
Pray for laborers!