A certain well-known evangelist was attending a convention in Indianapolis about mass evangelism. Inspired by the stirring messages he was hearing about winning the lost, he went with his song leader to the street corner during an intermission that evening. The song leader stood on a box and began to sing. When a crowd had gathered, the evangelist began to preach. Soon so many people had assembled that the throng was spilling into the streets. The evangelist thought it best to invite the people to follow him to the nearby convention hall where the evangelism conference was being held. Soon the auditorium was filled with spiritually hungry people, and the evangelist began to preach the gospel to them passionately.
After a while the convention delegates returned from their dinner break to find street people now occupying some of their reserved seats. The delegates began to mutter and complain amongst themselves. The nerve of this evangelist to impose himself this way—who does he think he is? The convention leaders deliberated about what should be done and then sent a representative to the evangelist to tell him their verdict. The evangelist was in mid-sermon when the messenger approached and whispered into his ear. The evangelist stopped preaching and said to the crowd who had come to hear the gospel, “Now we must close, as the brethren of the convention wish to come and discuss the topic ‘How to Reach the Masses’”.
There always seems to be a great divide in life between action and intention, between works and words, between doing something and merely talking about doing it. And it is in this space, between desire and deed, where most people die in a wilderness of inaction. For every go-getter who is ready to take the field, there are a thousand professional conference delegates who are content to go on endlessly discussing the need without ever actually doing anything. But the ones who will go on to see God’s will fulfilled in their lives are people of action, initiative, and urgency.