I spent much of my high school and college years intentionally building relationships with unbelievers, sharing the gospel with strangers, and passing out tracts. I even wanted to bring this message to other nations as a missionary.
But God was leading me to a different season than I imagined for myself. A season that didn’t look like typical missions work or much of an evangelistic opportunity. I was to become a wife and mother.
My interactions with the outside world were mainly the cashier at the grocery store, the children’s librarian, and people at the park. My limited interactions were fraught with countless interruptions, distractions, and little moments of crises.
I didn’t understand how this desire to evangelize matched up with motherhood, especially the part of motherhood that involved changing diapers and cleaning spit up. And I would feel guilty for not actively sharing the gospel with someone else.
But I was thinking about motherhood and evangelism wrong.
When Jesus walked this earth, he made disciples. He called them to come and follow him. He didn’t share a brief three point sermon, knock on a door, pass out a tract, and then walk away. He walked the same roads as his followers and traveled in their shoes. Jesus went the distance.
Because making a disciple takes time.
I can change the baby’s diaper as an expression of a type of sacrificial love that reflects Jesus. I can teach both my boys that the gospel is their only hope for change and right living, while I reach out to the mom next door. I can love my children and the mom from story time. They are both my neighbor.
When I offer my children grace, love, and acceptance in their failures I’m pointing them to a greater version of these things in Christ. Just the same, when I extend an invitation for a playdate with an unbeliever I’m reflecting a greater invitation from the Savior.
I’m being faithful where God has me.
I can trust God with the new seeds I plant now.