22 Feb, 2016 To fuel your fire #2/11: If we don’t show them how, they won’t know how!
Some people wrongly assume that if we truly love people we will find a way to share the gospel. I haven’t found this to be true. I’ve met many sincere Christians who would love to discuss spiritual things with friends and family, but who don’t do so because they really can’t work out how to get a relaxed spiritual conversation going. While we must help people understand the ‘why’, it follows that must then show them how. Training is needed – but training in what?
What we train them for must be determined by what they need to know to be effective as witnesses within the culture they live. We recommend the conversational approach as the way forward for people living in multi-religious societies – like most Western nations in the world are today. The problem with the ‘traditional’ approach to outreach (tell them the gospel / a more ‘confrontational’ approach) is this: How do you tell the truth to a person who doesn’t believe truth exists? Logically you can’t – yet this is what we are trying to do in traditional evangelism. But there is something we can do that works in our culture: We can talk with them about it!
New Zealanders are spiritual people (about 77% believe in a God or Higher Power). They are therefore also interested in spiritual conversations – if the approach is suitable!
To resource you:
- See a sermon outline on conversational outreach (with matching small group study) here.
- Note that there is a 4-week series on the same topic called ‘Conversations that connect’ here.
- See three concise video teachings on this here and here and here. (#6, 7 and 8 of the video-collectoin found here). You could play these in services – or your church small could play them and use the pdf discussion-guides (downloaded at the same pages).