What I have come to rejoice in is this: our Lord did not command, "Go, fish for men!" He rather promised, "Follow me and I will make you a fisher of men." He did not say: "Go, witness!" He promises, "Stay in the city until you are clothed with power from on high and you will be my witnesses...to the ends of the earth." And He does make us so: fishers and witnesses. As we follow Him, as we seek to love Him and to love our neighbor, serving them and honoring them and opening our mouth whenever they ask us to account for the hope that is in us, the Lord actually has use of us in bringing others to faith. But He solidly keeps His hands on the verbs for conversion. Not only is it true that I cannot believe by myself; I cannot give faith to a single other person out there - no matter how clever I may be in my attempts. But I can love them, serve them, rejoice in them, and whenever they ask an account - open my mouth to declare this great joy in which we live with our sins forgiven, our death destroyed, secure in the love of a Savior who loves them too and did all this for them as well.
Have you ever been in a conversation where you had the distinct impression that the other person asked a question of you, but really wasn't listening, wasn't interested, was only waiting to talk? How frustrating that is? And yet that's how we've made evangelism come off too often. What a different critter it is when our witness to the Savior comes as a result of genuine inquiry. And with no need to pressure the person - just to share with them the love that we have come to know and rejoice in and live from - and to assure them that it is for them as much as for us. I see that as the Lord's keeping His gracious promise to us - to make us fishers, to make us witnesses. Gift, not demand. Promise, not burden. Peace, not pressure.