Turning Your Inner Extrovert Inside Out for the Gospel

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Driven by my love for God and for the lost, I have led over 55,000 people to give their lives to Jesus Christ—as an introvert.

From trial and error as well as study, I have learned several keys that have helped me reach people for Christ and assist hundreds of others around the world in doing the same. By sharing my adventures, travails and victories, I hope to encourage you in personal evangelism, regardless of your personality, gifts or experience.

When I was 5 years old, God spoke to me in an audible voice and called me into ministry. Doctors told my mom I would be on life support or dead by that time, as I was born with an incurable blood disease and almost completely deaf. But my grandmother asked her pastor to pray for me. After that prayer, my next doctor's appointment revealed no further physical problems.

In the year the doctor expected me to die, I gave my life to Jesus and was born again. Later, God called me to preach and simultaneously gave me a deep love for the lost. I would stay up at night seeing visions of the world with my heart over various nations. I wept for the lost, begging God to allow me to be in the middle of what He was doing in the last days.

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Evangelism flowed from this passion, but there was only one problem: I was an introvert and not the biggest personality in the room. People mistakenly believe we introverts are shy, but that is untrue. We speak with intention, and we need a meaningful reason to interrupt someone's day that feels genuine. If we feel pushed into evangelism, we can't help but sound awkward. I can't remove risk from your evangelistic efforts, but I can give you ideas and methods that feel more genuine and less contrived.

I was helping with an outreach event led by the ministry of Dr. David and Sherry Nichols of Heart of the Father Ministries. We met for prayer in a church before heading out. During that time, the Holy Spirit fell in such a way that everyone present began weeping for the lost.

Everyone, that is, except me. I could not squeeze out even one tear.

"God, why don't I have what everyone else is getting?" I complained. And He spoke to me, giving me visions of my times of weeping alone for the lost.

"You've prayed for the lost. Now, it's time to go out."

Instantly, a vision popped into my mind of a survey with only a few questions. Dr. Nichols gave me permission to leave the group, still weeping in prayer, and go out on my own.

In less than an hour, I led dozens of people to Christ. One man even approached me and said he heard me talking to others.

"What do I need to do to get saved?" he asked.

God did not give me this idea as a one-size-fits all, but for that time and place. I saw many souls saved because of prayer and obedience to His direction.

Your takeaway? Pray for the lost. Ask God for His ideas on how to reach them. First Timothy 2:1 instructs us to pray with requests, prayers, intercessions and thanksgiving for all people. Why? The apostle Paul goes on to say in verses 3-4 (NASB), "This is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth."

Choose Your Weapon

God has given us a special gift that resembles a secret weapon. John Wimber called it Power Evangelism, and it includes the presence, power, prophecy and gifts of the Holy Spirit. Power Evangelism should be incorporated into almost any evangelistic approach.

Just as Paul wanted to make sure people's faith rested in the power of God and not in himself (see 1 Cor. 2:1–5), you need not be loud or naturally talkative to pray for healing or prophesy. You don't need a dramatic testimony. The Holy Spirit's empowerment levels the evangelism playing field for everyone.

At one time, I worked in an office supply store. I asked God to make me a blessing, and He did so in ways that granted me favor. I had the privilege of praying for many customers and saw miracles happen—sometimes multiple times a day. I prophesied over my co-workers and even had the privilege of leading the manager to Christ.

When I saw someone with a need for healing, I would ask the Holy Spirit to give me a reason to help carry their purchase to their car. One elderly lady used a walker as she shuffled to her car.

"When I pray for people, they get healed," I told her. "Would you like me to say a quick prayer?"

Politely, she accepted, but she left without experiencing a dramatic change.

A month later, the same woman came twirling toward me in the store. "Twenty years ago, I was in a bad car accident and broke my back," she told me. "I've been 100% disabled ever since, barely able to walk. But the day you prayed for me was the last day I needed my walker. I have no more pain!"

Leading her to Jesus was easy after this miracle—no loudness, drama or awkward outbursts required. With God on your side, you can do the same.

Find Your Custom

Finding an action that feels natural and repeating it multiple times holds great value. It has become your custom. Jesus Christ had a custom (see Luke 4:16). The apostle Paul had a custom (see Acts 17:1-2). You can have evangelistic customs as well. Here is one of mine.

Every server sees people pray before eating, but I use this as a time for meaningful evangelism. Not long ago, a waiter dropped off my food, and I said, "I'm going to do something you've seen people do lots of times—pray for my food. What's going on in your life that I can add to my prayer?" (Here, many servers start weeping.)

He shared his request, and I thanked him for allowing me the privilege of praying for him and included his request in my prayer. This made spiritual conversation natural when he returned.

While I ate, I asked God to give me a prophetic word that would show him God sees him (see John 1:48). When he brought the bill, I said, "Sometimes God shows me things for people, and I think He has shown me something for you." The prophetic word touched him deeply, and I had the privilege of leading him to Christ.

In restaurants, I sometimes pay for others' meals. I may do so anonymously, or I may choose to let my light shine (see Matt. 5:16). Entire families have given their lives to Jesus when they came to thank me and I told them the gift was just an excuse to meet people Jesus loved so much He died for. Generosity is an attention-grabber, and you shouldn't always keep it hidden.

Since I know Jesus died for the people He allows me to meet in a restaurant or just randomly in the grocery story, I can be confident He wants me to speak. After I share the prophetic word, people often become more open to hearing about Christ.

Make the Connection

Are you involved in evangelism with your church? I once played a so-called demon guide for a production called Hell House and also had a part in another production called The Glory and the Fire. Many gave their lives to Jesus through those outreach events. Does your church offer dramatic events, food ministries, missional outreaches or altar teams? Getting involved there could become another means of evangelism for you.

While buying a greeting card one day, I overheard a nearby customer complain to a friend about her back pain.

"I apologize for interrupting, but I heard you complain about your back, and I wonder what may have happened to you," I said.

She explained the problem.

"This may sound weird, but sometimes when I pray for people, they get healed. Is it all right if I say a quick prayer?"

"Yes," she told me.

After I prayed, I asked her to try out her back. The pain had disappeared!

"Do you know who healed you?" I asked.

"No," she said.

"Jesus Christ—and He is crazy in love with you! He has a plan for your life; do you know it?"

"I don't," she said, still moving her back in astonishment.

"Jesus died for you because He did not want to live without you, and His plan is to forgive you and help you become the person He created you to be," I explained. "He wants you to do the things He created you to do through a real relationship with Him. Jesus is real, and your healing proves it.

"To begin God's plan for you, you must give your life to Jesus Christ and ask Him to be in charge," I told her next. "Have you ever given your life to Jesus?"

"No, I haven't."

"Could I pray with you so you can do that and start living out His plan for your life?" I asked.

"Yes," she said, seemingly still amazed at what God had done for her.

"I'll pray only a few words at a time, and you can repeat them," I said. "But this is not a magic formula—it only works if you mean it."

I then led her in a prayer that went something like the following:

"God, I come to You in Jesus' name. Today I confess Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior. I believe He died for me and You raised Him from the dead. Please forgive me for everything I have done wrong. I want Your plan for my life. Thank You for healing me today. Thank You for loving me. Now please lead me into the life You want for me. In Jesus' name I pray, amen."

Next, I prayed for protection by God from the enemy, asked God to fill her with His Spirit and committed her to Him.

"This is just the beginning," I told her. "Spiritually, you're like a newborn baby. You're in the family, but you need to grow up and get to know God and the family He has placed you in."

To help new converts grow in the knowledge of God, I like to send people my book for new believers, The Basics in 21 Days, so I also ask for their email and mailing addresses. If it is a guy and he seems comfortable with it, I will also ask for his phone number and text him right then to make sure he gets the text.

I also ask people if they attend a church every week. If not, I invite them to mine. If they are from out of town, I try to text or email them contact information of a church.

Friend, you don't have to talk to every person you see. You don't have to pretend to be an extrovert to win the lost. It is time for you to be activated because you can reach people someone else cannot.

Your evangelism matters. I have received testimonies from all over the world by introverts who are seeing people come to Jesus. May you lead more people to Jesus Christ in this next season of life than you ever thought possible!

Ben Williams and his wife, Micah Joy, are founders of Life Ministries International, and co-pastor The Church @ New Bern in North Carolina, where they live with their three children. He has written two books and produced an online course on evangelism, Activating Introverts in Evangelism, Robbing Hell: How to Reach People God's Way and the e-course called Evangelism Intensive on www.releasinglife.org.

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