"How do I care more for people going to hell?" - A conversation with a Friend
"O that mine eyes were a fountain of tears, that I might weep over an unconverted, graceless, wicked, and adulterous generation" - George Whitfield
I have desired more, as of late, that I would see more transformed lives in Christ and that one particular brother would Jesus as his Savior. But I am worried that I don't weep for his soul and others around the world. I feel like I have been desensitized to sin and people being on their way to Hell. Simply put: How can I change this by the power of the Holy Spirit?
Friend (of Atkinson County, Georgia)
That’s a good question. I have a couple thoughts:
(1) However hackneyed it sounds, I would ask God to give you more sensitivity and concern for those who don’t love Jesus. Ask the Spirit to give you greater awareness of those around you, and to give you the courage and wisdom to speak about Jesus whenever possible. I think the Spirit typically leads us to one person at a time. What I mean is, in general, the Spirit will “stir” in us during regular routines of life and conversations (though I know of people who have felt called to go minister to foreign people groups). And, with our mind made up about the need constantly to be “salt and light” and loving toward the non-Christian, the Spirit will inspire us to have Jesus-filled conversations that make a difference!
(2) Simultaneously, I wouldn’t worry at all about trying to maintain an emotional state toward non-Christians. It is humanly impossible to maintain an emotion. That’s not how God designed us. So, I wouldn’t waste any energy at all in asking God to help you feel consistently “sensitized” for non-Christians.
Instead, we ask the Spirit to help change our attitude and mindset, and perhaps for God to help us be more empathetic if we’re really hard-hearted. As I’m sure you know, we don’t need to feel deep empathy for a need before we do something to meet that need. Feeling empathy helps; it is not necessary.
So, this is where I would disagree with George Whitfield, if he wasn’t just being poetic (which, actually, I think he was).
Those are my thoughts, at least. Keep up the great work!