Our mission is always relational, so never use people for evangelistic target practice and illustrations of social do-gooding. Drive-by ministry devalues the lost and is insulting to the Christ who died for the sake of redeeming broken people. People are too important to simply use as playthings to bolster our egos. The gospel is too important to not handle with more care.
C.S. Lewis wrote in his book The Weight of Glory:
All day long we are, in some degree, helping each other to one or other of these destinations. It is in the light of these overwhelming possibilities, it is with the awe and the circumspection proper to them, that we should conduct all of our dealings with one another, all friendships, all loves, all play, all politics. There are no ordinary people. You have never talked to a mere mortal. Nations, cultures, arts, civilisations—these are mortal, and their life is to ours as the life of a gnat. But it is immortals whom we joke with, work with, marry, snub, and exploit—immortal horrors or everlasting splendors.
It makes me pause to think about how I consider the people around me. If we find that people are treated as interruptions, then we’ve got it wrong. The love that we have for God must manifest itself in a love for those He sends across our paths.
After all, you’ve never accidentally met anyone. Instead, God—being God—organizes your life so that you can have an effect on every person you meet. We foolishly think the choice to interact or ignore is a function of time and personal convenience. It is not. The person before you for a moment or for good is a mission-shaped opportunity. We should welcome them as the image-bearer for God that they are; with a disposition of joy and an urgency to see God’s image unmarred by Christ’s grace exclaimed to them by our lips and lives.
We have the moments of light and love not just to share with Christ alone. We share them with one another. The immortals around us all have a destiny. The fellowship of the saints increases our joy and pleases our Father. The hospitality shown toward all men and women swings wide the gate of grace for the non-Christian to see grace, to understand love, and to respond to the gospel.
Taken from chapter 6 of my book Habits for Our Holiness