A lot of Christians get nervous when you start talking about evangelism. Some of that is legit. That is, we should take salvation seriously. When we are sharing our faith with someone else, that’s a momentous thing.
Still, I think we can lose some of the fear if we keep a few things in mind:
- Conversion is a process. One sows, another waters, God gives the growth. We need to intentionally step into the process, considering how our interactions with the people around us will help them take a step closer to God.
- Contrived methods are the least effective form of evangelism. Studies have shown that few people become Christians by listening to someone preach a scripted presentation of the good news. Few people are converted through door knocking efforts. (I know some people who are very gifted at sharing their faith through these means; they are the exception)
- The best way to reach people is the most natural: share good news with friends, neighbors, coworkers, and family. When we have a baby, we’re anxious to share the good news. When we buy a car, we like to talk about it. When our sports team wins, we love to let others know of our joy. Doing the same with the gospel is a very effective way of reaching people.
- Listening is more important than talking. The most important skill for evangelism is the ability to listen to people.
Love God. Love your neighbor. See the people around you. Think about how to best connect them with God.
I talk to people around the country and around the world about how to reach out to their communities. There’s lots more to be said. But these initial thoughts will help you get started.
I’ll go ahead and throw in a plug. My Church Inside Out books talk about these concepts and more. I also present a 4-hour seminar about mobilizing your congregation to go out into your community. Would love to share where you live!