I’m Horrible at Evangelism

You know one of the hardest subjects for me to talk about is evangelism. Why is it the hardest subject? Well it is because I'm no good at it. If I were to put aside my pride, my fear of rejection, my overall lameness I could do quite well and make a difference, but so often these things hold me back. So one thing I am doing is working on ways to get unlame, so to speak.

There are a couple things I have realized are very important in evangelism, I won't call them steps, because I think they are all pretty equally important.

Building Relationships:
A key to evangelism that a lot of people leave out is building relationships with the people up front. I know that If before I really knew about Jesus if some random stranger came up and started talking to me about him, I wouldn't give him the time of day. I would be thinking "who is this guy, I don't know him, why should I care what he has to say." That is my guess at how a lot of people interpret Christians who walk up and just preach without so much as an introduction. So one Key is building relationships. This can be as simple as hanging out at shows, at school, just being a loving, caring, compassionate, trustworthy friend.

Teaching with your life:
This alone is not enough. I used to think it was, this is my main way of witnessing, showing people Christ's love by the way I act and how I treat people. And it does work to an extent, but it is somewhat arrogant to think that you are a good enough example of Christ that your life alone is going to win peoples hearts over to God. So we do need to walk the walk, but we also need to be talking the talk.

Sharing Your Story:
Simply, tell people what being a Christian means to you. Tell them what knowing and following Jesus means to you. Few things hit home for a person more than knowing how Jesus has affected you, and how He has changed you. You can quote scriptures until your blue in the face and have people question it. But it is a little more difficult to question what God has done to you.  Especially if you have built relationship with them and they have seen this change in you.  This makes your faith much more real and tangible to them.

Invitation:
Just invite them to something. It doesn't have to be a formal invitation just make it simple. Ask them to come to youth group. To come to your churches Christmas program. Whatever. So they say no, you tried, try again, try again, try again.

Pray:
Pray before, during, and after. Lift up everything in prayer continually give it to God if doubt arises. Know that God is faithful and will never leave you, and will always do what is best for the situation.

The Gospel:
Without the gospel, you are not evangelizing, you're just talking to people about what it's like to be a Christian.  There is a quote by St. Francis of Assissi that is often quoted two ways "Preach the gospel at all times (when/if) necessary use words."  I choose when because as I said before my life alone is not enough to show people Christ in His fullness.  There comes a point when out of love for your friend, your family, your co-worker you should tell them the Gospel.  The Gospel is simply this.  Man is separated from God through sin.  God, not being satisfied with this separation, sent Christ down to die on the cross to pay the penalty for that sin and rose again to give us new life in Him.  If we accept that, confess it with our mouth, believe it in our hearts we are saved.  

We are here to tell other people of the amazing relationship we have found in Christ. One thing that always convicts me is trying to think of it in these terms. When my girlfriend and I started dating I told everyone, and continue to tell everyone how awesome she is, how much I love her, etc etc etc. How much more should I be telling people about the creator of the universe who knows me by name" OUCH!!!!

So my hope is that you can use all of these to work together and form a pretty effective way to evangelize to people. Just be sensative to the Holy Spirit let it take you where it wills. God knows who is receptive when, so try to put pride and fear aside and just jump, God will catch you.

Bryce Cooley
I've been doing some form of ministry since 2000. For 13 years I was involved in the youth ministry at Cordova Neighborhood Church as everything from youth intern to youth pastor. God has led me and my lovely wife Bethany to Church of the Foothills where I currently reside as the Digital Publishing Coordinator. I'm excited to see where God leads my wife and I.
SHARE
Bryce Cooley
I've been doing some form of ministry since 2000. For 13 years I was involved in the youth ministry at Cordova Neighborhood Church as everything from youth intern to youth pastor. God has led me and my lovely wife Bethany to Church of the Foothills where I currently reside as the Digital Publishing Coordinator. I'm excited to see where God leads my wife and I.