And then He told them, “Go into all the world and preach the Good News to everyone.” – Mark 16:15 NLT
I’ve made it a habit to play basketball three times a month. I’ve been challenged to tell others about Jesus during my time playing. For example, I remember inviting a buddy of mine to church. This was a man I’d been playing basketball with for over ten years. His answer really got me thinking. He said, “Why do I need to go? What’s in it for me?”
Hearing responses like that can be discouraging. I’ve always wondered, “Why would they not want Jesus?” But, first, we must remember we do not have the power to convert anyone. That’s God’s job, and we also have a part to play.
Here are a few tips as you talk to people about Jesus:
1. Connect before you correct. Look for ways to connect with the person you share the gospel with. Be more concerned about their interests instead of yours. In my case, we talked about fishing because this was my friend’s favorite hobby. Then, I was invited to go fishing with him. That opened the door to sharing the gospel. He eventually came to church. As we spoke, I sometimes disagreed with what he shared, but I intentionally listened. I listened to his fears, frustrations, and his doubts. Take time to listen when you speak to those you are trying to reach.
2. Look for ways to serve them. Once your friends realize you genuinely care for them, they become more open to receiving what you say. For example, maybe they need help around the yard, need a car wash, or you can simply ask them how you can best serve them. Remember, do not treat your friends like a project. God transforms. We simply make ourselves available.
3. Share meals together regularly. A lot happens behind the table! I have learned that people’s guards come down over a good meal or cup of coffee. Some of my most fruitful conversations took place while eating. That often led to an invitation to a church where my friends heard the gospel presented. Most likely people will need to see the fruit of your life for them to believe.
It’s important to remember that none of us are perfect. We all make mistakes. In those moments, we can share we are imperfect people pursuing a perfect God. We don’t have to fake it. All of us are in progress. I’ve found this to be encouraging to my unsaved friends.
Remember, our job is to allow God to use us, and we need to share the gospel when the opportunity presents itself. The results are up to God, not us. We must focus on what we can control and trust God is always at work.
1. Why is listening so crucial in evangelism?
2. Think of two people that need to hear the gospel. Pray for God to open the door to share Jesus with them.
3. How can you serve a friend who needs to hear about Jesus?
Tags: evangelism evangelize nonbelievers