11 Unexpected Ways Share the Gospel, Without Killing Your Relationships
CHICAGO, Sept. 9, 2014 /Christian Newswire/ -- Those who follow Jesus have a God-given command and Spirit-empowered desire to share the Gospel ... but often we don't know where to begin. Plus, we're worried about getting it wrong and burning relationships with friends and family. It doesn't have to be that way! As the old saying goes, people won't care how much you know unless they know how much you care. Here are 11 unique ways to "show" and "tell" from missional experts Ben Connelly and Dr. Bob Roberts, Jr., authors of A Field Guide for Everyday Mission: 30 Days and 101 Ways to Demonstrate the Gospel (Moody Publishers).
Walk your dog. Walk when your neighbors are outside. Strike up conversations. No dog? Here's your chance to guilt trip your spouse into getting one.
Fix broken things. Jesus saw brokenness in the physical world as symbolic of spiritual brokenness; you can too. Pick up trash, help a neighbor with rehab, clean a park, etc.
Build short fences. Tall fences don't make good neighbors; they distance and privatize you. Remove fences between you and your neighbors, or if you must have them, build them low.
Try a new hobby. Not stoked about video games, cycling, or model cars, but know folks who are? Become stoked about people, and prepare to be dominated, out of breath, or have gluey fingers.
Display imperfection. Instead of hiding faults and mistakes, talk about your humanness and the fruit God produces as He continues to redeem it.
Pray before conversations. Whether a meeting, business call, friendly chat or first date, pray before it starts ... for God to lead your words and help you model His character. Note: If praying would kill the relationship, skip this suggestion!
Tip well ... even if they do a horrible job. Show dignity, kindness, grace, mercy and the love of Christ. The waiters, assistants, janitorial staff, drivers and housekeepers who surround you, greet them by name. Get off your phone before you check out of a store.
Ask good questions. Show people you care about them, their beliefs and their desires. "When do you feel like that?" "Were you afraid?" "How did you respond?" "What concerns you most?" "How are you doing with it now?" "Tell me more!" and of course, "Why?"
Ask what people think of God. Literally everyone considers that question and most will answer. Even if some answers scare you, it's a way to see how others think about deep things.
Talk to not-yet believers the same way you talk to Christians. Discuss hobbies, passions, work or whatever you talk about in Christian circles-95 percent of conversation can look the same.
Watch your reactions. Respond to frustrations in gracious ways. Ignore office gossip. Display patience in difficulty. The "small moments" of life are platforms to display your faith.
Parting word of caution... beware of turning people into projects and forcing the Gospel uninvited. Remember, most mission happens through meaningful conversations and genuine relationships. So above all, love others well.
For review copies or interviews with the authors, call Janis Backing at 312-329-2108.