Many of us are unsure about sharing the faith that we possess with others. Wouldn’t you agree? Even though there is a desire to do so, many don’t because of intimidation, lack of
knowledge, and an uncertainty of what kind of approach to use when sharing.
What kind of excuses can we relate with?
- It’s not my personality. “You have the personality to be outgoing and be a relationship builder but that’s just not me.”
- I don’t know enough. “I don’t know the Bible well enough to point people to key verses. I can’t answer all the questions people have about God.”
- I get too uneasy. “I’m pretty shy, and I get too nervous when I have to verbalize my faith. I start stuttering and second guessing myself.”
- Evangelism isn’t my gift. “Let someone else do it who has the spiritual gift. This process is more for pastors.”
- I don’t want to be laughed at. This is probably the biggest excuse. “I don’t want to be known as a Bible thumper.” Acts 17:32-34 says it best: Evangelism will receive a mixed reaction: some sneered at Paul, some kept searching for more information, and a few believed.
- I want to be “sensitive” to others and their views and not come on like a “bull in a china shop”.
We have to get beyond these stances in order to be effective sharers of the Gospel.
Matthew 10:32-33 says this. “Whoever acknowledges Jesus before men, He will acknowledge before His Father in heaven. Whoever disowns Jesus before men, Jesus will disown before His Father in heaven.” This verse should sting us a little.
I really like how the Navigators teach that the act of evangelizing is a Process that may take weeks, months, or years. It is not a one-time event. “When we bring someone to a decision to trust in Christ in the course of a conversation, we can be sure of one thing: considerable preparation and laboring has already occurred in that life before we arrived on the scene. This is what Jesus was saying to the twelve disciples in John 4:36-38: “The reaper draws his wages, even now he harvests the crop for eternal life, so that the sower and the reaper may be glad together: Thus the saying “One sows and another reaps” is true. I sent you to reap what you have not worked for. Others have done the hard work, and you have reaped the benefits of their labor.’
Sharing Christ with others is a Holy Spirit thing, it’s that simple. Your “old nature” won’t do it. Period. Your old nature is all about your comforts. But we are called to get out of our comfort zones and to go to the world to proclaim the Gospel. See Acts: 1:8. I see four main comfort zones of the “old nature”: 1) The comfort zone of my will. Your will is stubborn and it must be transformed! Read Romans 12:1-2. 2. The comfort zone of fleshly fulfillment. Your old nature loves power, big numbers, being #1, money, and materialism- Read Galatians 2:20. 3) The comfort zone of apathy. Your old nature doesn’t want to change. It doesn’t necessarily want a new challenge. Read Matthew 9:35,38, and 4) The comfort zone of familiar relationships. Your old nature loves “feel good” relationships with people just like you. See Parable of the Good Samaritan- Luke 10.
More on the attitude of witnessing in the next blog.