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Can I Get a Witness?


Gwen Smith

August 21, 2015

Blog, Christian Living, Evangelism, Fear, Love

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Growing up we played silly games. Fun games that connected strands of strangers and tethered them to a specific time and place with a memory. One of those was the cookie jar game.

It’s probably more of a chanty thing. You remember.

Crowd: “Amy stole the cookie from the cookie jar!”

Amy: “Who me?”

Crowd: “Yeah, you!”

Amy: “Couldn’t be!”

Crowd: “Then who?”

Amy: “Elise!”

Crowd {redirected}: “Elise stole the cookie from the cookie jar!” … and the game went on to never really gather the cookies that were stolen. Who thinks these things up? Why can’t we just pass around the cookies and eat them with milk instead? I hear your “Amen.”

Sometimes I think that those of us who are Jesus lovers play the cookie game with the Great Commission.

Jesus Lovers: “Susan, tell the world that the Lord is good!”

Susan: “Who me?”

Jesus Lovers: “Yeah, you!”

Susan: “Couldn’t be!”

Jesus Lovers: “Then who?”

Susan points to another Christian who she thinks has less kinks in her armor. “Tara!”

And the game goes on, but the directive to be a witness for Jesus Christ does not. It is sharply cut off and redirected at the “Who me?”

I play games and pass up opportunities to influence others toward Christ all the time. I bow out from repping Him to the world…or to that friend, volleyball mom, neighbor, family member, or co-worker who is in desperate need of His grace. Why? Because I like my comfort. It’s fluffy and I’m shallow like that far too often.

It’s not such a silly game when eternal matters are on the line, is it?

It’s a sad game.

One that I need to stop playing.

One that we need to stop playing.

I can almost hear you whispering to me in hushed tones. I am all about Jesus. Love that guy! I totally dig His grace, love, forgiveness, and peace. Oh… and His comfort! Love His comfort. Love the epic lay-down-your-life and rise-again Easter thing. BUT don’t ask me to go talking about Him or anything. I just can’t. My life is complicated. I don’t know enough about the Bible. My marriage is on the fritz, I’m unemployed, and my kids are total prodigals, I can’t possibly be used by God to do holy stuff.

If we are being honest, I think all of us would agree that faith in Christ would be a whole lot more comfortable without that scary Great Commission thing. Am I right?

It is essential that we be motivated beyond us. And this does not mean you need to start handing out Bible tracts on street corners or leaving them with a tip at the next restaurant you go to like your uncle Bob does.

It means that we need to want what Jesus wants. To do what Jesus did. Jesus was all about doing the will of the Father. “For I have come down from heaven, not to do my own will but the will of him who sent me.” (John 6:38, ESV)

Beyond that, for you and me to do the will of the Father we need to want to do the stuff that Jesus wants us to do. See? It’s one of those pesky heart-matter items.

And He told His followers what He wants us to do just prior to His ascension. “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, AND YOU WILL BE MY WITNESSES in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” (Acts 1:8, emphasis mine) Replace the word you in that last sentence with your name.

Gwen will be His witness.

{Your name} will be His witness. {Your name} will be given opportunities to influence others toward Jesus.

Nervous yet?

Don’t be. The call to be a witness might seem intimidating, but remember, those words rolled directly off the loving lips of Jesus and He would never ask you to do anything that He wasn’t going to help you with! Besides, He doesn’t really have any glowing candidates of perfection to call up. We are all just fumbling fools who fall more frequently than we’d like to admit.

You are qualified because of your Messiah, not because of your mess. {Tweet this!}

“For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.” (Ephesians 2:10)

Dear Lord,
You are good. It is my greatest joy to worship You. Please help my worship to spill over in all areas of life. Give me courage to do what You have created me to do. Empower me to help others see You and to point them in Your direction so those around me can find the hope they are desperate for.
In Jesus’ name, amen.


Have you ever played the cookie jar game with the great commission? What is one thing you can do today to be a witness for Jesus?

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About Gwen Smith

Gwen Smith

I am an unashamed, imperfect worshiper of Jesus Christ. I cling to His goodness to cover my mess and purpose my days to live out the hope of the Gospel. It is my joy and passion to inspire women to live fully in grace and truth. I write books, devotions and songs. I speak. I sing. I worship. I post, pin and tweet. I am intensely in love with the Word of God and believe, wholeheartedly, that the Bible is divinely inspired truth.


58 responses to “Can I Get a Witness?”

  1. Joy says:

    Thank you for your ministry and for today’s message. I appreciate the way it challenges me to grow in my faith. It adds to my commitment to connect with others in church and in my community.

  2. Penny Carrico says:

    My niece is in the 5th grade, and she passed out new testaments to each student in her class for Valentines Day. The sinner in me was so scared for her that she would be ridiculed and persecuted. I was humbled and convicted that day when she took a stand for our God and stood up for what she believed and witnessed to others. She certainly set an example for me, her 47 year old aunt who needed to do more. This devotion today reminded me of this story.

  3. Veronica says:

    I love sharing God’s works and miracles with others that have been my life. HE has blessed me more times than I can count. Unfortunately there are times doubt creeps in even though I know there is nothing HE cannot do. These are the times I feel so blessed to know there are those of you that step up and intercede for me in prayer. I want to shine bright for HIM that others too will know there is nothing impossible for HIM. Right now I want to share HOPE with so many being diagnosed with cancer. That God has a purpose for us through our trials and I pray we all come to know this and stand firmly in His love so that others may find comfort knowing HE makes no mistakes. I pray HE wraps HIS loving arms around all of us as we grow in HIS love and share HIS word.

  4. Sabrina Yeager says:

    To be a good witness, I could invite neighbors over for coffee and start being their friend. I can begin to show them Jesus through me.

  5. Akira Knowles says:

    I can be a witness by displaying God’s goodness and grace through testimonies that I’ve not only went through in my life but got through because of God!

  6. Jehrica says:

    We can share the Good News of Jesus by telling all that Jesus went through the worst suffering and bore the sins of ours on His shoulders, and never gave in- so that we can have confidence that if Christ is within us no evil has power to overwhelm us! We can enter in His throne room of grace by simply accepting His gift of the cross which will result in salvation! Hallelujah!

    Also, use the ABC’s of Salvation
    To know God and be ready for heaven,
    follow these steps:

    A. Admit you are a sinner.
    “There is no one righteous, not even one … for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.”
    Romans 3:10, 23. (See Romans 5:8; 6:23.)

    Ask God’s forgiveness.
    “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”
    Romans 10:13

    B. Believe in Jesus
    (put your trust in Him) as your only hope of salvation.
    “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16 (See John 14:6.)

    Become a child of God by receiving Christ.
    “To all who receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God.” John 1:12 (See Revelation 3:20.)

    C. Confess that Jesus is your Lord.
    “If you confess with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.” Romans 10:9 (See verse 10.)

  7. Sara says:

    Gift giving is huge in the culture I was raised in. Sometimes I’ll be in the line up at Walmart and see how tired the cashier is. I try and do some chit chat with them and have in the past bought a small little chocolate conveniently located right near the til and gifted it to the cashier. The next time I do this I will proclaim His name! …not in a crazy random way but a kind word such as ‘the work you are doing is a blessing, may the Lord bless you.’

    Hope someone else is up for this challenge with me.

  8. Yvette Gibson says:

    Showing Love

  9. Yvette Gibson says:

    Forgiving when it’s most hard

  10. Twila says:

    I can let my light shine wherever I go in my community, volunteer at a food bank, in the Dollar Tree, at the Library.

  11. Sue Altier says:

    I love Gods people… Wherever I am I want to just love on people the best way I can. I am 59 and I am going on a mission trip next week to Guatamala. I pray Hod will use me to give and share with his people… Sue Altier

  12. Deby Minter says:

    First I want to say thank you for sharing this. I believe that I need to remember to not get sucked in to the negative things I hear about my colleagues, but pray for the needs that I see in their lives. I need to ask God to give me those divine appointments making it possible for me to speak up when the opportunity presents itself.

  13. Iesha says:


    First I would like to say thank you for writing such a thought provoking devotional. It is true that many times we miss opportunities to share about our faith because we feel unqualified but as you said, because we know Jesus we are already qualified. I have been challenged to share my faith with those I come in contact with by first building a relationship with them and then sharing what I believe and why I believe it and how it has changed my life. I look forward to the divine appointments that will be brought my way and I am committed to telling others the Good News! For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Jesus Christ!

  14. Lisa E says:

    This really touched my heart today. Thank you. I am in many support groups on Facebook. Many times I respond to a post letting the person know I’m praying for them and that they can message me if they would like. Some of the groups request no religious discussion in the group, but I was approved to say the above. I pray that I can be bolder in sharing my faith in Jesus Christ. He’s leading in many ways.

  15. Jamile Chapman says:

    I recently witnessed to a friend. He is stressing about finding 2 and 3 extra contracts so he could take care of everything. I encouraged him to slow down and trust God. God with order his steps and place give him the things he needs. He just has to seek and then listen. And trust God to take care of things. I’m going to check on him and pray with him today.
    I’m trusting God for my circumstance with finding employment and getting back my life on track…in His way and in His time. It’s not easy to case my cares and Him and not try to handle things on my own but I know that is what He requires of me and I’m trying to use myself as an example to others that are in need.
    Thank you for this reminder!

  16. Ana says:

    Sharing Him with family.

  17. Roberta Peake says:

    Continue to disciple my daughter-in-law and to share Jesus with my clients. I love speaking about Jesus. He has called me to study this year so I enrolled in college at the age of 55. I’m loving every minute of learning about him. And sharing that with my daughter in law. I Am door Jesus grateful for all he’s giving me. He is a good loving father. And I am to tell everyone of this love.

  18. Tammy says:

    The nest and easiest way for me to witness is to recognize those moments when people comment on my peaceful demeanor or how awesome that circumstances went a certain way….I make sure to point to Our Lord as the reason and the provider of that peace and the circumstances. But most of all I try to remember to point out the GOOD God brings of bad circumstances…that’s where people need to see and hear our faith most! Helping others see light in the dark times and know it coming from God is what can truly help others to find their way! God bless. Another great devotion Gwen 🙂

  19. Sue Coleman says:

    I have recently started volunteering at United Ministries. Praying with clients is suggested but not required. I have thought about it but felt shy, unworthy, and awkward. Today, I will proudly use your prayer from yesterday (it is very appropriate to the needs of our clients) it will be a tiny seed to plant but I can do that.

  20. Susan says:

    This was an great scenario and a great question of accountability. How I will do this today is I will listen to His still, calm voice when to speak and when not. My weakness is not preaching the Good News my weakness is loving the unlovable. Not all the unlovable but the ones that have hurt me. I was praying and praying for this one girlfriend who has effect our whole community with a corporate sin and God REALLY showed me Love, His Love and how to really express it to someone I didn’t want to like. My girlfriend and I keep each other accountable for fighting for this girl at the cross, fighting for her soul because that’s what it’s about. One of the worship songs that I play over and over and over lol lol again is your song, “Broken into Beautiful”. It has brought SOOOO much healing to my heart, thank you Gwen!!! This song had also helped me in this specific situation because just as I am still broken so is my friend. Thank you Lord that You walk with us molding us and refining us daily. Thank You for choosing me and for allowing the scales to be removed from my eyes❤️

  21. Barbara says:

    Thank you for this message today. It is not always easy when I haven’t always been a woman of practicing faith. Many know a different me. I did fall yesterday but told my co workers I would be praying extra hard last night. Then later in the day I had to remind someone very dear to me to stop using the LORDs name in vain. I guess I will continue in my small steps & remind people of GOD & his goodness. God Bless you.

  22. Susan says:

    I can be a witness by being a positive influence & encourager to others with bible based principals. I love your daily devotions! Bless you!

  23. Regina says:

    I can be a witness for Jesus by showing patience and kindness. Giving God the glory for the good that happens in my life.

  24. Bola A. says:

    God bless you Gwen. This message is so apt. By the way, I love how you begin each message with a story or scenario. It makes the lesson hit harder than it ordinarily would have.
    The funny thing is that in my bus this morning, the lady sitting next to me shared small pamphlets with a short message and testimony to all the passengers including me and I sat there and was like, “wow. I should be doing this.” Then after she did that she preached! I was so moved and inspired by her. I prayed for her in my heart when she was done.
    The great commission has not been an easy task for me. I have mostly only done it when my fellowship or church makes it a group activity. Your message has inspired me to use my blog as a way to share the goodness of Jesus.
    God bless you.

  25. Gaby Enriquez says:

    Growing up I had to deal with a broken home, a drug addict dad and a coodependent mom. We were able to go through those hard times only with the help of God. I have always known that my call is with that specific ministry, of helping other that come from broken families, but I have always been selfish and thought that someone else had more time to do that work. I recently realized that I need to help others just like God helped me, and thanks for this words of encouragement because it is just a confirmation from God that I am on the right track with the spiritual boot camp I am going through right now. Thanks!

  26. Jessica says:

    Thank you for the beautiful devotion inspired by God’s Word. I am embarassingly guilty of the playing the cookie jar game when God calls me to spread His Word. I have walked away from opportunities ashamed that I didn’t scream His Praise, that I didn’t share His comforting Words. I am going to strive to stop playing that game, and to not be selfish with the knowledge of His Love and Grace and Mercy. One thing I can do today his let my coworkers know I am praying for them to have a beautiful week.

  27. Rose says:

    Amen! and Praise the Lord for His ultimate wisdom in knowing that GIG helps and supports and encourages one another. He uses us to spread the word and when I realized that it is all about Him so it got easier to just be an “unashamed and imperfect worshiper” and let Him do all the work because He doesn’t make any mistakes. He shines through us. Oh my soul does loveth the Lord! xo

  28. Cathy says:

    Can you get an “amen”? Absolutely! Amen!!! I’ve been here before. Insecure, worried about the stuff in my life that isn’t perfect or in order. Someone may find that my Household has issues! But then I realized these things are “on the way.” And to look for the goodnes of God right in the midst of. I can share those things and sure enough. The Lord sends others that I can share with, relate to even. And how God is helping us. It becomes a testimony to His goodness. Perfect? Not by any means. But on our way? Absolutely! “Amen” dear sister- amen!!

  29. Amy says:

    Wow Gwen, this was exactly what I needed to hear!! As a bumbling Jesus lover I am overwhelmed at times with the opportunities God has given me to share His word! Somehow I have begun providing pulpit supply for our Pastor every couple of months and each time I doubt, fear, shake my head and wonder why me? Just a bumbling sinner, with no formal training who loves Jesus……but every time the Holy Spirit just sends words and works through me despite my doubts. “You are qualified because of your Messiah, not because of your mess”. And wow am I a mess….what perfect words I truly needed……thank you!!!

  30. Carolyn Swan says:

    By my actions, I will show Jesus’s love. Just saying Good Morning and giving a smile gets attention and you tell them Jesus love you and you have a great day. It works in my country Bermuda.

  31. Dawn Washington Thomas says:

    I can let people know that God our Father loves us as we are, no matter what.

    • Jehrica says:

      -Psalm 100:5 “For the LORD is good and His love endures forever; His faithfulness continues through all generations.”

  32. Angela Montgomery says:

    I critique everything/one when it comes to the Gospel. My witness will be not to critique when things are not done the way I think they should be.

  33. Beatrice Williams says:

    The one thing I can share with some one is to let them that Jesus loves you just as you are.All they have to do is pray the prayer of faith. Just be open up your heart to the Hoy Spirit, and the Lord will do the rest I would also tell them it is going to get worse before it gets better. Satan is really going to be after them once they make their mind up to follow Him.

  34. Marissa says:

    I listen to Christian on my office I used to put down the volume when someone came in out of timidness. But now Jesus put on my heart to blast my Jesus music loud and proud. And I will be doing that from now on!

  35. Leah Sprinkle says:

    I have anxiety when i drive and thats one reason i dont like to drive with People in my car. So i just dont drive with people in my car. Well today i spoke with a good friend of mine who always gives me a ride to church. He said he needed a ride to the Gospel singing at the senior center. I said no, then i called him back and said yes. I drove him to the singing and then to lunch and then back to his house. I had anxiety just about the whole time but i was able to do it. I am glad i did

  36. Gina Fall says:

    Gwen, WOW!!! This was so powerful. Just yesterday my neighbor knocked on my door, I ran and hid my bible and Christian books I read everyday. I felt so ashamed after. Why was I trying to hide my faith and love I have for my God.? Why do I hold back telling people how I feel? I am a new child of our Lord, is that the excuse? I should be shouting from the mountain tops how much I love our God. I ask for your prayers to help me, I am so encouraged by your words you write. Thank you for this site Gwen, I print them each out. Love to you, Gina.

  37. Laurie W says:

    Whenever I eat out, I will ask my server if there is something I can pray about for them! It’s a real convo starter!

  38. Li Morris says:

    I am not going to hide under the bushel esp when my doubters say I shouldn’t talk about God to others or criticise when I get emotional when ministering to someone. I cannot tell you how timely this was for me today! I cannot exactly express how much courage it had given to me…it is confirmation of the things I do know.

  39. Montana Cain says:

    I am going to be bolder in my faith. There are moments when I want to talk about my relationship with God and I don’t because of how it/I will be percieved. But, with Ephesians 2:10, I am reminded once again that it is not about ME and my life is to give glory to God!

  40. Katrina says:

    I can share My testimony when the opportunity presents itself!

  41. jef says:

    This morning God woke me up with “as this plant lives so does she” I had forgotten to water this plant and its leaves were dropping bad when I watered it, it perked up. Also got “Can I Get A Witness” in my email. God speaking to me again! I have a neighbor that has cancer and she is not doing well. I hadn’t been to see her for awhile. I went to see her this morning taking this plant with me.When I arrived she was not home. I found out her husband had taken her to the hospital so I sit the plant in the house. Then I sat on a bench in their front yard surrounded by all her plants and flowers and prayed. Gods words are powerful and I’m believing what he said to me this morning. God told us to go and lay hands on the sick and they shall be healed. I also stand on 1Peter 2:24 By his stripes ye were healed.

  42. Amanda Queen says:

    I was raised in the Church but some where between getting married and starting a family I lost track of going to Church. I do my devotions daily but this Sunday I will be going back to Church. Thank you!!

  43. Jenny Smith says:

    Help those who are broken and feel so alone by telling them that our Lord Jesus is our BEST FRIEND and by sitting quietly and talking(I do talk our loud) to Him one can feel His warmth of comfort.

  44. Ana Edwards says:

    Great post and a challenging one for those who find it difficult to share the love of Jesus with others for whatever reason. Lately, I have been impressed in my spirit to pay the grocery bill for the person checking out in front of me One young man was so shocked that he waited for me just to give me a big bear hug and say thanks. However, some people won’t let me pay for them and just refuse to be blessed.

  45. Rose Davis-Brown says:

    Share His word & Praise Him

  46. Beth Castellano-Warner says:

    Wow! There are so many great ideas! Thanks to you, Gwen, and the commenters! I recently started sharing some of the GiG devotionals on my wall. {it’s my only form of social media!} Also, I seldom say I hope on my page. When I do: I say hope and pray. When I don’t, it’s replaced by pray. No one responds. I say I’ll PRAY about it. Or I say: I pray instead of I hope. My prayer is that I will write/speak/think it more without the effort I now need to put forth, along with it effecting others. Also, no matter the struggle I always say I’ll PRAY for you, as others are saying Good Luck. Very few people seem to respond, but I don’t care. I had written an awesome profession of faith after being inspired by a GiG devotional, and as I looked something up on another site, I was appalled to find that the long essay was gone when I got back to FB. The time wasn’t available to re-write it so it wasn’t posted. Odd, huh? I decided it wasn’t the right time. I don’t hesitate to give a Bible verse to help other believers.

  47. Maritza says:

    I’m a witness that He listens and responds-on His time-which is perfect. Not for us, for His plan-therein lies the key-patience! – But always, He has responded. Always. Even when the answer is not what I asked for. Although difficult and still do not understand some of His answers, they are His. So I am a witness and I pray He uses me to share His good news.

  48. Jean McDonald says:

    post pin and tweet

  49. Kim Mattox says:

    This is what I have been led to lately. Thank you for voicing it! My one good thing for today is to pray with and for coworkers who are struggling and to share your post with them.

  50. CoriLiz says:

    Gwen, this is a good post! What a great analogy! I used to be very much a silly game player. I am still working on it, but I have found that by making God a daily presence in my home by talking to Him and about Him with my family has made it less awkward to talk about Him with others. Also, one of my favorite things to do is attach a small gift to it, like donuts for the workers building our new house or a Starbucks gift card for the frazzled-looking new mother. Anyway, I hope this helps even just one person giving then some practical ways to practice sharing the love of God with the world. Have a blessed day!

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