Building off of yesterday’s post, we need to think about how we get people to start talking to others. Let me throw out some ideas:
- Convince our members that evangelism matters. I mentioned a few weeks ago that we (Herald of Truth) have noticed that when churches begin talking about evangelism, they start seeing an increase in activity. We need to:
- Tell our people that outreach is important.
- Celebrate those that are reaching out.
- Emphasize that our church doesn’t plan to sit back and wait for outsiders to come to us.
- Train people. That’s one of the big things we do at Herald of Truth. I don’t say that as a commercial, but as a reality. Steve Ridgell’s seminar Sharing Our Story has helped many congregations increase their level of outreach (The Can I Tell You A Story? book shares some of the ideas, but there’s nothing like hearing the material in person). I believe that if churches will work through the material in Church Inside Out (preferably using book and workbook), they’ll see new ways they can touch their community. I also present that material in person, though I’ll admit that I think it’s better to study it in a 13-week format.
We’re not the only ones training for evangelism; I just know our material best.
- Cut down on distractions. It’s hard, but we somehow have to get our people to see that we often spend our time talking about things that don’t matter. Because we aren’t united in outreach efforts, we divide over so many other things. As a church, we need to avoid:
- Being seen as a negative voice in the community.
- Being seen as a group that is aligned with one political philosophy or another.
- Being perceived as a church that is focused on minor points of doctrine.
- Being seen as Christians who merely follow the winds of change of culture.
OK, I didn’t say they were easy things. But if we can work on these ideas, we’ll see a change in our churches. I’m convinced of it.
What else would you suggest?