THE MISSING PIECE IN OUR EVANGELISM by Adriel Sanchez for Core Christianity
Many Christians today are discouraged about their poor witness for Jesus. We struggle to get conversations about Jesus started with our friends and family. In their book, Everyday Church, Tim Chester and Steve Timmis, touch on this.
Many of us know how to answer the question, What must I do to be saved? But we do not know how to begin a conversation about Jesus. Our only hope is a crass, awkward change of direction, like crunching the gears in your car. So you are watching football and you resort to saying things like, ‘At last a substitution. Did you know that Jesus could be your substitute?’ (113)
Often, our evangelistic effort looks like an awkward fumbling over words that leaves people thinking we’re weird. Could it be that we’ve missed an important step in the evangelistic process? A step which the apostles were careful to observe for the sake of the mission? Could it be that we’ve forgotten what it means to sacrifice for our neighbors before we try to speak to them?
What would you be willing to lose to see your neighbors come to know Jesus? Reaching people with the gospel of Jesus Christ requires sacrifice, but what might be gained is far greater than what is lost. As Christians, we desperately need to be aware of this truth, and it is modeled for us by Christ’s early followers. For them, reaching the lost was so important that they were willing to give up very precious things in their lives for the sake of reaching their neighbors. Let me give you just one example.
Paul came also to Derbe and to Lystra. A disciple was there, named Timothy, the son of a Jewish woman who was a believer, but his father was a Greek. He was well spoken of by the brothers at Lystra and Iconium. Paul wanted Timothy to accompany him, and he took him and circumcised him because of the Jews who were in those places, for they all knew that his father was a Greek. (Ac. 16:1-3)