The 3 Most Overlooked Evangelism Skills
Last fall, I finally had enough.
The stresses caused by a worldwide pandemic were a primary source behind my expanding waistline. And I needed help. I downloaded an app and began my weight-loss journey.
This is what I have learned after shedding 25 pounds:
- It’s far easier to start a weight-loss program than to maintain it.
- There is no such thing as a magic pill or an easy plan to follow.
- There is really no mystery to weight loss.
- Food is not the enemy.
- Forgiveness plays a huge factor to sustain good eating decisions.
It’s fascinating how our human nature tends to look for easy ways to do something difficult. We are prone to invest into new fads, new programs, or a fresh start. The interesting part about any weight-loss program is most of us already know how to manage our weight. We already know which foods we ought to avoid or that we ought to eat less. We have good intentions, but struggle doing it.
Good health is a journey. It’s about breaking old habits and starting new ones, learning how to process stress, and being kind to ourselves. There is no such thing as bad food but learning how to eat what God provides. And most importantly, every day is a new day of grace. Guilt has no place in weight-loss, so we can forgive ourselves and start afresh if we have made difficult choices in our eating habits.
The same principles could be applied to personal evangelism.
- It’s far easier to brain-storm and plan evangelism activities than to actually do them.
- The difficult part about evangelism is to maintain activity rather than to start.
- There is no magic pill for evangelism success. It’s hard work.
- There is no mystery to learning what to say, because we already know what Christ has done for us.
- Forgiveness plays a huge factor because guilt has no place in evangelism. You are forgiven!
There are many wonderful personal evangelism resources and materials that are often unused and quickly forgotten. Many faithful Christians have good intentions but excuse themselves too quickly from participation.
I believe there are three skills that are often overlooked that can play a huge factor in personal evangelism.
Courage often pushes us to take on new risks. It usually means stepping into unknown or unfamiliar territory. That’s discomforting and scary.
If you have had minimal experience with personal evangelism, you are going to feel like a failure. After you’ve displayed courage and stepped way outside of your comfort zone to give a reason for the hope you have in Christ to somebody you know, it is common to feel like a fool. It takes courage to start witnessing and it takes even more courage to do it again.
Courage translates to action when Christians stop looking in the mirror and starts looking at the cross. Personal evangelism is far more about trusting God’s promises than our abilities. By trusting in Christ, we learn how to process the feelings of failure and conquer fear.
We love because Christ first loved us. Love for Christ prompts and sustains faithfulness. Evangelists show up to witness even when they don’t feel like it. Loving our Savior more than what we can do for him is the key for consistency.
It’s not often that one evangelism activity will provide blessings, but it’s usually an accumulation of effort. Through consistent activity, the Lord allows congregations to stumble upon something that provides visible fruit for their efforts.
When people ask my opinion about their idea for evangelism or outreach, I will usually say, “I love it!” It’s not because I think it will work or not – but to emphasize activity. It’s far more important to try and fail rather than not try anything at all.
Tenacity creates good habits. Over time, personal evangelism becomes more of a habit rather than a goal to obtain or a responsibility to carry out.
We have no control over how a person responds to the gospel, but we have total control in being God’s messengers. Tenacity becomes a faith exercise. It’s the ability to keep working even when results from our efforts do not match expectations.
Heart-wrenching disappointment is a real emotion. We often will go to great lengths to avoid placing ourselves in a position to be disappointed or hurt. This is a reason why personal evangelism can be so difficult. It’s not about giving it a try but being tenacious to keep coming back.
Jesus is right when he says that the harvest is abundant, but the workers are few. People are exercising courage, consistency, and tenacity to spread the Word in their community. It’s important to be surrounded by like-minded Christians to offer encouragement and support instead of feeling isolated and alone.
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