And he said to them, “Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation" (Mark 16:15).
Evangelism, or spreading the Word of God, is an essential pillar of Christianity. Still, all too many Christians fail to do so—they keep their faith to themselves, or worry that they're not qualified to bring someone into the fold of God's love, or give into the fear of being rejected. It can be tricky to know how to introduce the topic of Jesus without making things awkward, but it's nonetheless necessary that we try. Here, we've outlined a few strategies to help you share God's love in a way that is genuine, easy, and thoughtful.
Affirm Your Motivation
There's no question that evangelism is the right thing to do. To begin with, Jesus commanded his followers to spread the gospel to others. But on top of that, introducing the Christian faith to those who haven't had a chance to discover it for themselves is an act of kindness. In fact, it's one of the most loving things we can do for others. In sharing God's love, we are also sharing the path to salvation through Jesus. We're giving them a chance to experience eternal love and peace, and to choose Heaven over Hell.
When you think about it that way—as a priceless gift that you are offering someone, rather than an argument you are trying to win—it allows you to act and speak from a place of authenticity and love, rather than a place of obligation. Start by doing some quiet reflection and asking yourself, "What does it mean to share God's love?"
Listen—and Ask Questions
Transformation and learning begin with curiosity. No one likes being lectured, and introducing new ideas in the form of questions or dialogue is always more effective than preaching at people. If you can make someone wonder what their life would look like with God in it, you've already helped them to take the first, most important step.
But to be able to ask questions like that, you must first be a compassionate and active listener. Listening allows you to recognize opportunities to bring up faith. It allows you to notice where people are experiencing pain and suffering in their lives, so that you can then offer a balm for it.
Share Your Story
Don't be shy when it comes to talking about how God has worked in your life. As humans, we connect with stories much more easily than we do with abstract information, and for someone who doesn't have experience with Christianity, God can seem abstract. By sharing your own experiences, you're showing others the power of a relationship with God, rather than telling them.
Practice What You Preach
It's imperative to remember that even when you're not actively engaged in talking to someone about God, you are still an ambassador for Christianity. Everything you do and say is a representation of your faith and values.
For that reason, it's important that your actions are aligned with Jesus' message. Practice showing love and serving others, both in word and deed. You never know who's watching, or how your actions might inspire them to make a change in their own life.
Extend an Invitation
Openness and inclusivity are important parts of welcoming others into the Christian faith. If someone you know expresses an interest in learning more about Christianity, it never hurts to invite them to attend a faith-based gathering or event, whether that's a church service, Bible study or prayer group, or even just a get-together with your Christian friends.
Don't Be Pushy
There's often a fine line between being enthusiastic and being overbearing. When it comes to sharing God's love, using tactics that are too forceful or that rely on shame or guilt will only turn people off. Bring it up, offer to answer any questions your friends and/or loved ones may have, and invite them to attend church with you sometime. If they seem receptive, you might follow up with them at a later date. Beyond that, don't push it too much. Remember that God gave all His children free will for a reason.
In spite of our best intentions, we all have awkward encounters or moments where we don't express ourselves as well as we would like. We are human, after all. When your words fail you, remember to open your heart to God in prayer and let His words guide you.
Word of Life Church is dedicated to making the world a better place by spreading the Word and Love of God. Our mission is to create an authentic, welcoming worship community, and to empower people to live a life of faith and service in the name of Jesus. Our offerings include a variety of worship experiences, Life Groups, youth programs, and service initiatives for individuals of all ages, all of them designed to offer community and opportunities to engage with God. Attend a sermon or contact us today to learn more about how we can serve you, or consider donating to support our work.