Engaging in door-to-door evangelism earlier this year, two seminary students came across a house they almost overlooked because of its obscurity. When they knocked on the door, Jackie, a man with a unique connection to Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, answered the door.
When master of divinity students Sharon Ngai and Christian Stringer told Jackie they were from Southwestern, Jackie informed them that he had given his life to Christ more than 35 years ago as a result of Southwestern students doing door-to-door evangelism back then.
The student who led him to Christ was Frank Page, who now serves as president of the Southern Baptist Convention's Executive Committee. At the time, Page was leading a group of fellow students in evangelism when his team met Jackie.
Jackie was lost and in need of the transformation that comes through Christ. After a 45-minute conversation with the Southwestern evangelists, Jackie gave his life to Christ and was later baptized by Page at Gambrell Street Baptist Church in Fort Worth.
Oftentimes, Ngai and Stringer said, evangelism can be disappointing when people are not even willing to listen. So when they met Jackie, it was a powerful reminder that even just one conversation can be the difference in bringing someone to Christ.
"It is encouraging to see that people in this school have been doing evangelism and have been faithful all this time," Ngai said. "All it took was someone showing up on their lawn. It is encouraging to see the fruit after all this time."
The story of Page's evangelism efforts, Stringer added, is a reminder that door-to-door evangelism is effective and is an opportunity to reach people who might not otherwise hear the Gospel. "There are a lot of people who aren't fans of door-to-door evangelism and would even say that it doesn't work," Stringer said. "So it is nice to have a reminder that God can use this method."
Ngai and Stringer said they have both grown in the area of evangelism and are increasingly aware of the need to reach the lost, particularly in neighborhoods where opportunities abound. Although not everyone will accept or be open to the Gospel, Ngai and Stringer know they must be obedient to God's call to reach the lost.
"Especially when you see someone come to know the Lord," Stringer said, "it reminds you of the importance, because if we don't speak the Gospel to them today, they might not have this new life in Christ, and who knows what their tomorrow holds."