Sunday, September 14, 2014

The Best Way To Spread The Good News But Not To Your Neighbour?

Just invite them to church

"Don't you dare ever ask me to do that again!" Was the response of a member of a congregation I had been encouraging to invite his neighbour to church. Maybe he went about it all wrong and maybe I should have warned him that there could be a negative response. Still his reaction surprised me. It surprised me because I don't understand how you can spend as many years in the church family as he did and never shared to story of Jesus with anyone except those in church.

I've always had a passion for spreading the Gospel. Don't get me wrong, I understand the fear in talking to others about God. I do understand that each person confronts the prospect of different kind of problems and prejudices in their efforts. Even so I don't think our society is any harder than anything they had to confront in the New Testament and I don't get the lack of passion that many church people in our western society have for presenting the message.

It's not that hard. All you have to do is tell your story.

The fear of rejection and of ridicule is a powerful deterrent. But when something like the story of Jesus stirs in you heart, how do you not share?

I remember sharing my passion, when I was much younger with an elder of my church. His eyes lit up as he said "that's exactly how I feel Richard". Again I was taken by surprise. I had tried many times to get something started that would help get the message out and had always been frustrated. I had viewed this person a one of the barriers. In fact he was on my side but, even though he was on leadership, he too had been frustrated. It was only years later, when I was on leadership that I realized just how easy it is for one or two individuals to stymy enthusiasm.

Over time I discovered that the best way to overcome this opposition was to get individuals sharing their story. It is only when enough individuals share their stories of the importance of Jesus in their lives, that the barriers fall down.

I have done, I think, every evangelism course ever developed and they all come down to one thing. You have to find a way to share your story. Don't be rude; be patient with your listener; be in context with the conversation and share. There will be opposition but if you love Jesus you will love to do it.


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