Author Holly A. Melton on Evangelism, the Holy Spirit, and How a Vampire Changed Her Life

Holly A. Melton is one of the leaders of Cru, Campus Crusade for Christ in the United States, an organization that is dedicated to promoting evangelism and discipleship. While Melton enjoys working with Cru, she recently decided to tell the story of how she got involved in the first place and encourages others to spread God's message in the new book, "Follow My Lead: Responding to God's Voice in Everyday Encounters."

The Christian Post: You claim that a vampire changed your life. Please tell us more.

Melton: Before I met Christy, who thought she was a vampire, I'd never seen how God could use me to help someone so different from me. It transformed her life and mine because it gave me the confidence to continue asking God to show me how I can help others with their own transformations. I've been having amazing conversations with people ever since, and I give all the credit to God. If she hadn't come into my life, and I hadn't have tried to speak to her, I don't know that my life would be where it is today.

Christy approached me; I was in my own world and she interrupted me … interrupted my world. I think that we shouldn't discredit someone so quickly. I had to ask, "Why is this person initiating with me? Can this be a spiritual conversation?" Interruptions can happen anytime, and the Holy Spirit can have a reason.

CP: Do you believe that God can use anyone for His purpose? What are some memorable stories (or one memorable story) that you can share of a surprising transformation?

Melton: Most definitely. Anybody. I felt that that confidence was ingrained in Christy, who still wore her black clothes but yet had a new attitude. You don't have to wait until you're spiritually mature for God to use you. You don't have to have gone to church for a certain number of years.

The chapter titled "The Madam's Curse." We always called this woman "crazy" because she had so many cats. She was freaking out because she had fired someone who claimed to be a witch and had put a "curse" on her. She was scared and wanted to speak with us because she knew we were Christians. I found out that she was influencing prostitutes all over the world and spoke with her about how prostitution influenced young Christians. But I didn't judge her and instead offered her the following Bible verse: "He who is in me is greater than he who is in the world" (1 John 4:4).

We ended up having a talk about spiritual warfare, and she wound up dedicating her life to Christ and then helping prostitutes turn away from the industry. She has since become an evangelist for those who need help. A lot of people need Jesus in different ways first, not just to redeem their sins. In this case, the woman needed Jesus for protection first, and then to save her soul.

Think about it this way: maybe the reason you decided to follow Jesus is a different reason than why I chose to follow Jesus. We need to ask the Holy Spirit what this person may need – if not, there could be a huge wall put up and prevent Jesus from entering in. Even when it comes to speaking to those of different cultures, we need to pray and figure out what that culture may teach or what

CP: What is the message you hope readers take away from the book?

Melton: I want readers to understand the role of the Holy Spirit in evangelism because I think when we train people to share the Gospel; we train them in the basics. We don't train people in dealing with the Holy Spirit in our relations with other people. The Holy Spirit does not want to be the center of attention but wants us to focus on Jesus. The Holy Spirit only wants Jesus glorified and will show us how to bring Jesus into the conversation. The Holy Spirit is the one who knows the heart of the other person, the unbeliever. So much of the work of preparing the unbeliever is the work of the Holy Spirit, so if we invite the Spirit in, He will do that.

"Successful evangelism is taking the initiative to share Christ in the power of the Holy Spirit and leaving the results to God," is the perfect definition of successful evangelism.

"Follow My Lead" is available online or in stores. To learn more about Cru or Melton's work, click HERE.

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