Don’t Ruin My Witness
“Hey, this guy is not a Christian. Don’t ruin my witness.”
I have an unwavering love for Jesus! I genuinely believe that everyone’s life can be transformed through a personal relationship with Him. It’s truly inspiring to witness those gifted with evangelism openly share their faith with anyone they encounter. However, there’s something about the notion of “ruining your witness” that has been weighing on my mind lately.
This phrase has been echoing in my thoughts for weeks, and I’ve heard variations of it for years. Although the sentiment carries a noble intention of wanting others to trust in Jesus, there’s an underlying concern that has been troubling me. With all this said, here are five reasons that worrying about ruining your witness bothers me.
5 Reasons This Bothers Me
1. I am not a tool of the kingdom; I am a child of the King.
We know that Jesus would leave the ninety-nine to seek out the one who is lost, but He wouldn’t do so at the expense of the majority. Jesus said He would leave them in an open field, a place where they would be safe (Luke 15:4). It’s crucial not to become so consumed with winning over the lost that we forget our immense value in God’s eyes as His beloved children (Romans 8:14). He wants us to recognize that everything He possesses is also ours (Luke 15:31). He delights in using us, but it’s primarily because He loves being in our presence. Let’s not become overly fixated on our witness to the point of forgetting that God takes immense joy in our company.
2. People are never projects but objects of our love.
Even if we were to successfully win over the entire world for Christ, it would amount to nothing without genuine love (1 Corinthians 13:3). Love is an essential element in God’s kingdom. This may be my personal struggle, but when I hear someone expressing concern about their witness, it often implies viewing others as projects rather than individuals. While there may be people we long to see in heaven, genuine love and care will naturally draw them towards what we have. Love is the key that unlocks their hearts, enabling them to hear God’s voice.
3. You can’t control whether people will be offended.
Attempting to create a flawless environment for someone to encounter Christ may end up painting an inaccurate picture of the body of Christ. Some of the deepest wounds experienced by Christians have been inflicted by fellow believers. The goal is not to recruit people to our exclusive club, but rather to introduce them to Jesus. Despite our efforts to avoid tarnishing our witness, people might still take offense. It’s possible that we may need to seek forgiveness, allowing them the space to feel offended. By being our authentic selves, God’s love will naturally emanate from us. Loving others should be the instinctive behavior of those who genuinely love Jesus.
4. You can’t control whether people come to Christ.
While we should seize every opportunity to share Jesus and make the most of each moment (Colossians 4:5 & Mark 16:15-16), our priorities might be slightly misplaced if we excessively worry about ruining our witness. Jesus Himself stated that no one comes to Him unless the Father draws them (John 6:65-66). Sharing our faith is akin to prayer—we play our part, but we also allow God the freedom to work in His own way.
5. Jesus seemed indifferent to preserving His witness.
As I contemplated this matter, God gently reminded me of an important truth—Jesus didn’t seem overly concerned about preserving His witness. It was the disciples who approached Him, claiming that He had offended someone (Matthew 15:12). There were instances when Jesus intentionally provoked the religious leaders (Matthew 23:27), and even deliberately offended His own followers (John 6:60-62). If that’s the case, it becomes evident that faithfully following Jesus can, at times, disrupt our carefully crafted witness.
With all these considerations, it’s important to note that the desire to protect our witness is not entirely negative. I believe God stirred these thoughts within me to uncover deeper truths. My hope is that these reflections contribute to your pursuit of God and your love for others. I would greatly appreciate hearing your thoughts in the comments section below.