Share my faith….make disciples….serve! SUCH great habits…but how do we implement them into our actual lives! Often these attributes make me think, that’s a tall order God, not sure I’m up for the task.
I was a teen when I first became a Christian and one of the way’s we evangelized was to get a list of names and walk from house to house knocking on doors. I was not excited about this activity but I knew that I loved God and wanted to share him with others, and this was the task assigned to me SO I walked up to the first house! All I could hear was quite an argument happening and I wasn’t sure that I wanted to knock and interrupt all that! BUT…my leader told me…KNOCK…and well….it didn’t turn out very well. As you can guess, I didn’t really want to experience that again. I turned in the rest of the names on my list and went home!
Since that time, I have come to understand that culturally “the cold call” is not the most effective way for ME to minister and reach out to people! Churches use a term called Relational Evangelism…it really just means….be kind to people, get to know them, share your life with them and SHOW them Jesus! Being a friend to someone and showing up when they need a helping hand and a healing word is going to turn more hearts to Jesus than just about anything else we can do! Steve shared a great representation of this during his talk over the weekend! (check out the final message in our God talk series)
If we take a look at Jesus’ life we can see how he began deep and meaningful friendships with those he first called into ministry. He had a group of 12 disciples (students) who he invested a lot of time, teaching and energy into. He developed deep relationships with these students and showed them the way to reach out to other people with the good news of the Bible. If we modeled our life after Jesus it would look something like this: being available to answer questions, not judging someone for something they have done in their past, being sure basic needs were met (food/drink), crying with someone who has lost a loved one, sitting down for meals with people laughing and talking about life, talking through hard decisions with people, asking for prayer and receiving that support, being present in the moment that you are in, and SO much more!
I am reminded of a saying that I have heard often since I was a kid: “treat others the way you want to be treated”! So often it’s written off as trite, or you say it and hear it, but don’t really act on it. OR WORSE….we only think other people should treat us the way we want to be treated and we don’t even think about how someone else might like to be treated!! If we really took this old saying to heart….think how much strife and anger and hostility could be avoided, eliminated really, from our lives, from our community, our city, our state, our nation….OUR WORLD!
Let’s LOVE others the way Jesus showed us to! Let’s SHINE Jesus in our actions!