Perfect people need not apply

It’s okay not to know all the answers. One of the biggest fears people have when it comes to the idea of sharing the faith is the fear that they will be asked a question they can’t respond to. I think an important thing to do when preparing people for evangelism is to assure them that they don’t have to know everything.

In a meeting on Sunday, we were discussing the need for greeting visitors and working with newcomers. Someone observed that we should always have someone in charge of that who could answer all of the questions. I disagree. There’s nothing wrong with saying, “I don’t know the answer to that. Let’s go talk to Sister Johnson, who’s been here for many years. She probably knows the answer.” And if Sister Johnson doesn’t know, she’ll probably know someone who does know.

But here’s the secret I want to share with you: people like to see a little vulnerability. If you come across as the skilled professional with all the answers, you set yourself apart from the person you’re talking to. If I’m talking about astrophysics with a NASA engineer, I’ll probably learn some things, but I won’t come away saying, “I can see myself being like them.” If we present ourselves as sinless saints who know everything there is to know about Christianity, we project an image that people can’t relate to.

In evangelism, we want to show ourselves as imperfect people who are trying to become like a perfect Jesus. We don’t want them to see us as perfect, or they’ll feel like they can never really join us. We want them to see Jesus as perfect and understand that they take a lifelong journey down the road to being like Jesus, just like we’re doing.

People don’t need someone who has all the answers. They need someone who can point them to where the answers are.

2 thoughts on “Perfect people need not apply

  1. Vern

    Exactly. Even worse is when people pretend to know the answers. Hearing “I don’t know” has opened many people’s hearts.

  2. Pingback: Link: Perfect People Need Not Apply – In Christ Alone

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