As Scripture says, “Anyone who believes in him will never be put to shame.” For there is no difference between Jew and Gentile—the same Lord is Lord of all and richly blesses all who call on him, for, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? And how can anyone preach unless they are sent? As it is written: “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!”
Confession time. I stink at telling people about Jesus. Anyone with me? It feels odd for me to say, “So, uh, do you know Jesus? Do you, uh, need God in your life?” As a pastor this seems odd, but I can talk weather, sports, grilled meats and parenting little crazies just fine, but when it comes to putting Jesus “out there” it feels so awkward. I can literally stand on a stage in front of a few thousand people and talk about my deep love for Jesus without breaking a sweat, but when it comes to one-on- one or a small group of people that don’t know Jesus, I’d rather have a root canal sans pain killers.
This past weekend Jon talked about living life “on mission.
” This kind of message always gets me excited to do something. I have no shortage of “want to” when it comes to sharing the hope I’ve found in Jesus. The challenge for me comes in how I do it.
When I was growing up I went on a youth group outing where we went to the beach (I lived 15 minutes from one). We were told to tell someone about Jesus before lunch time. As an introvert’s introvert you might as well have told me to gargle a jar of June bugs. There I was, all 5’11”, 115 pounds of walking skeleton, literally praying to the God of skinny punks for someone willing to hear me stutter through a bungled series of questions about where they’d go if they died tonight and if they knew Jesus.
Since most of that awful experience is blacked out of my memory, I can’t tell you how it all went, but I can tell you no one became a Christ follower on my watch that day. Suffice it to say that evangelism isn’t my strong suit and hasn’t come naturally over time. So when Jon said the important words, “There are more people that need to hear the gospel than share the gospel,” my response is to agree and continue to wonder why I’m not good at bringing lots of people to Jesus.
If you're like me, let’s spend some time this week being honest with God about who we are and where we are with evangelism. We’ll explore what it looks like to share Jesus when what typically comes to mind is not how we’re wired to share Him.
If you are a natural, then follow along with those of us who aren’t, so you can understand how to help us. I bet there will be some helpful nuggets for you, too.
Take some time to tell God what He already knows about your evangelism abilities (or lack thereof). For the record, He loves you either way!
Take some time to ask and answer these questions:
Who am I naturally drawn to?
What connections do I make without trying too hard?
What group or “kind” of people do I want to see come to know Jesus?
Memorize Matthew 28:19-20 this week: Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.