In just one week in May 2021, over 160 people responded to the gospel and accepted Christ in Reigate. Evangelist Jonathan Conrathe and a team of evangelists from Mission24 came to Reigate Baptist Church to support and encourage us in local mission and hallelujah, what an outcome!

When Mission24 offered us the opportunity to host their School of Ministry and Mission, we jumped at the chance. It was wonderful to see our budding evangelists equipped and trained up over the year, then sent out on mission. We shared the gospel on the streets, in the parks and even door to door – now that felt brave!

Since then, we’ve launched Go’, our monthly meet-up where we fuel up on breakfast and share encouraging testimonies, learn together, pray and worship, then Go’ out together into our local community to share the gospel. Just recently our men’s pastor came along (somewhat reluctantly!) to give it a try. Pushing past the initial fear, he had some great conversations and shared the gospel on the streets. He went away feeling encouraged and commented that it would now be easier to share in his everyday life. And that is my hope: as more and more people try Go, they will overcome the fear, and evangelism won’t be an event but an everyday occurrence.

Mission should be high on any church’s priority list and here at Reigate Baptist it certainly is, but of course we are still learning and growing. And Covid has not stopped us. During this difficult season, not only has the church released me into a more evangelism-focussed role, but we have invested, with generous grants from Allchurches Trust and Street Pastors, in our Toastie Truck catering trailer. We soon hope to be up and running, going out and serving up toasties, hot chocolates and the gospel to our local community. It is so important that we go out and meet people where they are, because many are reluctant to come on in, no matter how welcoming we are.

"It is so important that we go out and meet people where they are, because many are reluctant to come on in, no matter how welcoming we are."

Going out, however, involves being brave. Even the most experienced of us can feel the fear, but hopefully choose to do it anyway! Recently, I went on a long-awaited holiday in the sun in Egypt together with a friend from church and we were able to share the gospel with many Muslims while we were there. It was the first time she had ever done anything like it – talk about in at the deep end – but she was so brave, witnessing to many Muslims and handing out Arabic gospels with me.

Before we went I received a wonderful word of encouragement from one of my elders. He said, Stay close to the Shepherd. If you are close to the Shepherd and you see a wolf you don’t need to run from the wolf, you don’t need to fight the wolf, you just stay close to the Shepherd.” Any fear I had been feeling about the trip disappeared!

And that for me is the key: we do not go alone. I remember Deuteronomy 31:6, Be strong and courageous. Do not fear or be in dread of them, for it is the Lord your God who goes with you. He will not leave you or forsake you.”