What is the most daunting thing that Christians are called to do? Love their enemies and pray for those who persecute them? Turn the other cheek? Speak for those who can’t speak for themselves?
I would say that, for me and many fellow Christians, the scariest thing we are called to do is evangelize. We are called to share our faith.
It’s frightening to stick your neck out there and share the truth with someone when you aren’t sure how they are going to respond. But to be honest, it is the most important thing we can do. Remembering why we evangelize combined with a knowledge of how to do it effectively, can help us overcome our fear of sharing our faith.Remembering why we evangelize combined with a knowledge of how to do it effectively, can help us overcome our fear of sharing our faith. Click To Tweet
The first step to conquering the fear of sharing your faith is understanding why we do it.
I’ve had days when I just feel like giving up on everything, like nothing is going my way, and I wish the ground would swallow me up. On those days, when it feels like nothing matters, there is a song I always turn to.
Through tears, I put on my earbuds, tap my phone screen, and let the music enter my soul:
“See My hands and look at My feet / It’s okay if it’s hard to believe / I have faith you will do greater things / It’s My time to go but before I leave / Go tell the world about Me / I was dead but now I live / I’ve gotta go now for a little while / But goodbye is not the end / Don’t forget the things that I taught you / I’ve conquered death and I hold the keys / Where I go you will go too, someday / But there’s much to do here before you leave / Go tell the world about Me / I was dead but now I live / I’ve gotta go now for a little while / But goodbye is not the / End of the journey, the end of the road / My spirit is with you wherever you go / You have a purpose and I have a plan / I’ll make you this promise / I’ll come back again but until then / Go tell the world about Me / I was dead but now I live / I’ve gotta go now for a little while / But goodbye is not the end.” (16) CAIN – The Commission (Official Music Video) – YouTube
This song never fails to remind me of what truly matters. We are in a world where we don’t belong, and on the days where we feel that so starkly, we must remember why we are still here and cling to the promise that we won’t be left here forever. Jesus will return for us. But until He does, we must fulfill the commission He set before us to tell all the world about the life and reconciliation He provided through His death and resurrection.We share our faith because it is our purpose, and in doing so, we share the hope we’ve found in Christ with those who are wandering hopeless still. Click To Tweet
We share our faith because it is our purpose, and in doing so, we share the hope we’ve found in Christ with those who are wandering hopeless still.
How to Evangelize
What it looks like for you to share your faith can be as unique as your experience.
Everyone has a different story, and we can all tell it in our own special way. Evangelism doesn’t look the same for everyone.
Maybe you are having a one-on-one conversation with an unbeliever, maybe you are giving your testimony before a group of peers, or maybe you are writing an article about how God has changed your life.
No matter what it looks like, sharing your faith can follow a three-step format that Jesus Himself exemplified for us in Luke 5:1-11 when He called Simon Peter to follow Him.
“On one occasion, while the crowd was pressing in on Him to hear the word of God, He was standing by the lake of Gennesaret, and He saw two boats by the lake, but the fishermen had gone out of them and were washing their nets. Getting into one of the boats, which was Simon’s, He asked Him to put out a little from the land. And He sat down and taught the people from the boat. And when He had finished speaking, He said to Simon, “Put out into the deep and let down your nets for a catch.” And Simon answered, “Master, we toiled all night and took nothing! But at Your word I will let down the nets,” (vs. 1-5).
Jesus starts by putting Himself in Simon’s path where Simon was comfortable. Jesus not only stepped down from heaven into our world once, but He daily took the time to step into the more intimate world of individuals.
Then Jesus asks for Simon’s help in a way unique to him, establishing His connection with Simon. We can see that this earns Jesus Simon’s respect when he calls Him Master and lets down his nets even though they had already been fishing all night.
Making a connection with someone makes all the difference in them comfortably opening up to you and really listening to what you have to say.
“And when they had done this, they enclosed a large number of fish, and their nets were breaking. They signaled to their partners in the other boat to come and help them. And they came and filled both the boats, so that they began to sink. But when Simon Peter saw it, he fell down at Jesus’ knees, saying, “Depart from me, for I am a sinful man, O Lord.” For he and all who were with him were astonished at the catch of fish that they had taken, and so also were James and John, sons of Zebedee, who were partners with Simon,” (Vs. 6-10).
Jesus performs an astounding miracle with personal implications for Simon, not just something amazing for Simon to see, but something that affects him in a real way. You may not be able to perform an astounding miracle for others to witness, but the concept still applies to us.
People want to know how much you care before they will care about how much you know. When you meet a tangible need that they have or relate to pain they have suffered it is like pouring crystal clean water on parched, cracked earth. Service softens hard hearts to the gospel.
“And Jesus said to Simon, “Do not be afraid; from now on you will be catching men.” And when they had brought their boats to land, they left everything and followed Him,” (vs. 10).
Finally, Jesus uses an analogy in His call that relates to what Simon knows best—fishing. But He invites Simon into a better kind of fishing; more rewarding and purposeful than the fishing he does now. Jesus didn’t just step into Simon’s individual world, He brought His own world with Him, and all the light and hope and love that comes with it.Jesus didn’t just step into Simon’s individual world, He brought His own world with Him, and all the light and hope and love that comes with it. Click To Tweet
Jesus connected to Simon by using his language, miraculously entered his world through humble service, and then invited him into something better—life with Him.
Go Tell the World Individually
Yes, evangelism can be scary. The idea of telling the whole world about Jesus can feel intimidating and overwhelming.
But we don’t have to tell the whole world all at once. By following Jesus’s example, we can tell the world one person at a time.
After making genuine connections with individuals, we can tell them why we serve, and invite them into conversation about the One that has so changed our lives and inspires us daily.
Are you ready to share Jesus the Jesus way?