This post is inspired by Kevin G. Harney’s book Organic Outreach for Ordinary People. I strongly recommend this book for anyone who wants to get better at sharing Christ with the people in their lives.
How easily can you see yourself saying one of the following things:
“I ate at a new restaurant last night, you’ve got to go there some time!”
“I saw that movie, you need to watch it.”
“Have you read this book? I really liked it.”
Not too hard, right? When we find something new that we really enjoy, it’s a natural step for us to share it with our family and friends. So why do we have such a hard time telling them about Jesus?
The One Degree Rule
Everybody runs at their own spiritual temperature. Some people have the gift of evangelism and find it easy to run hot. Others of us struggle to ever bring God into our conversations. Take a minute to think about where you fall. We’ll say that one means we rarely even think about evangelism and ten means we regularly share the gospel with others.
Got the number in your head? Good. The point of this exercise is not to make yourself feel bad if you’re running cold. No matter where you are on the scale, we want to keep warming up. And in order to do that, we need an honest evaluation of where we’re starting.
We need to be regularly checking our temperature and trying to boost it, one degree at a time. This will vary over time. There will be days we’re on fire and days we’re stone cold. Just keep trying to get warmer and you will notice God working through you.
So how do we raise our temperature? Kevin Harney covers several different ways in
chapter 4 of his book. Here are 3 for you to try this week
1. Make Friends with non-Christians
For many Christians, it is very easy to become insulated in your little bubble of like-minded friends. It’s one thing to acknowledge that everybody needs God. It is another entirely to have a specific person in mind who needs God in their life right now.
2. Celebrate Forward Progress
It’s easy to get discouraged and lose interest in evangelism when we don’t see people coming to Christ right away. Have patience. This is a big deal, and people are wise to take their time and understand it fully before committing their lives to God. Celebrate milestones, like the first time they come to church, when they show a willingness to read the Bible, or when they ask questions that shows genuine interest. These are huge steps that show that God is at work in that person’s heart.
3. Take Hell Seriously
Evangelism has eternal consequences. People we know and love are going to be doomed to hell if they don’t recognize Jesus as Lord. If that doesn’t motivate us to share the gospel with them, nothing will.
It’s never too soon to start building evangelism into a lifelong habit. The sooner your children get started with it, the more natural it will be for them as they get older. Ask them about their friends at school and encourage them to invite them to church events. Pray with them about their friends’ salvation, along with any family members who aren’t saved.
Bonus Tip: The Evangecube is a fun tool for sharing the gospel. Give one to your child and let them
have fun manipulating the cube while getting familiar with how to present the gospel. Works for adults too!