“I am an evangelist!” This was the opening statement that Rice Broocks said to an audience of 400 pastors, campus minsters and lay leaders today (July 23) in Victory Pioneer. I was inspired to see and hear him talk about the importance of the gift and the office of the evangelist.
Rice came to the Philippines 25 years ago to lead a summer outreach with Steve and Deborah Murrell and Al Manamtam. He would do evangelistic meetings every night in the Girl Scout auditorium. That was the time when Jun Escosar, Ferdie Cabiling, Judy Cabiling (still Judy Pena during those days), Manny Muleta among many others got saved and became the first few members of the brand new church. An evangelistic fervor was imparted to the young believers that inspired them to go and tell other people about Jesus.
In his blog [A minute With Rice], he said that back then he did not expect the church to grow to this size now at 40,000. I believe that seeds were planted in the hearts of the young people that even though they were not called to be in the office of the evangelist, they would be doing the work of an evangelist.
2Tim. 4:5 But you, keep your head in all situations, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, discharge all the duties of your ministry.
We see people from different walks of life ministering to other people. Family members are getting saved. Parents are getting saved. Children are getting saved. Friends and neighbors and officemates are getting saved. Students are getting saved.
Evangelism is indeed a very important ministry because it is the gateway of people to the church. People need to hear the truth of God’s Word and repent of their sins in order to get saved.
Today, Rice is reminding the church to continue doing the work of an evangelist. He even mentioned that there are days that he does not feel like sharing to people but he would do it anyway. He said, “Everyday when you jump into the pool even if you are an Olympic swimmer, the water is still cold.” Wow! That’s huge. I realize that all of us go through the same struggles (fear of rejection, comfort zone, apathy, lack of compassion) but we just need to go out there and do it. Jesus said to go and make disciples. Jesus said it. That settles it!
Thanks Pastor Rice for stirring again the passion for evangelism in our church.