Everyone Knows How to Evangelize (We’re Looking at You Sports Fans!)
I have a favorite author. In my opinion, she has written several books worthy of being read through several times. And even though I have, in fact, read them several times, if stranded on a deserted island with only one book, it would be a Dorothy Dunnett book. Since first reading her books in the early 1990s, I have been on a mission to introduce as many people to her books as possible. Whether someone was looking for a good book to read or lamenting the lack of substantive historical fiction, I saw my opening! “Have you heard of The Lymond Chronicles by Dorothy Dunnett?” I would ask. “You have to read them! They are amazing! You will love them!” Not everyone agreed with my assessment of the books. Some tried them and “couldn’t get into them,” or “didn’t understand what was happening,” or thought “They were too complicated.” Despite this, I didn’t care if they didn’t “get it.” I knew the books were great and was not offended if someone disagreed with me. There were, of course, some who would agree with me, and I would have a fellow Dunnett fan with whom to discuss the books. Like me, everyone knows how to evangelize, it’s just a matter of the topic of our evangelism.
So What do Books Have to do with How to Evangelize?
I was never embarrassed to bring up the topic of my favorite author and her books. I was an enthusiastic defender of her protagonist, Francis Crawford of Lymond, a flawed, multi-lingual, quick-witted, classically trained 16th-century character, as well as her other enigmatic characters, who have been so interesting to escape with through the years. You might say I am an evangelist of sort for Dorothy Dunnett and her books.
I have often asked myself if I look for opportunities to share so enthusiastically about my favorite author, join book clubs to discuss their literary themes, and read them multiple times, do I have the same passion for sharing the much more important Good News of the Gospel? If what Paul preached in 1 Corinthians 15:3-8 is true, and I believe it is, then of first importance is the fact that Christ died for our sins as had been prophesied hundreds of years prior. He was buried and raised on the third day, also prophesied, and appeared to hundreds of people at different times to prove that He was alive. It is this Gospel that saves sinners. This is truly amazing news and more than just some fictional book I can read and get engrossed in. This news has implications for eternity for all mankind. I should be that much more excited to look for opportunities to talk about it, bring it up in conversation, defend it. While not everyone will be convinced that the Gospel is the best news they have ever heard, some, with the help of the Holy Spirit, will respond, believe, and find eternal life.
So What is Your Evangelism Topic?
So, what excites you? What do you talk to your friends and coworkers about? It might not be Dorothy Dunnett (though I HIGHLY recommend giving her books a try) but it might be a favorite sports team (obviously the New England Patriots), hobby, book (have I suggested The Lymond Chronicles to you?), movie series or even your work. These are fun and exciting things that make life interesting. But do you take that same passion and use it to look for opportunities to talk about the Gospel? Maybe you haven’t thought about it before or maybe it seems awkward or embarrassing. It certainly can be, particularly if you do not train or practice.
Engage 360 understands that talking about your faith can be awkward. However, we know from experience that some training, a few practical tips, and practice will help you to have more conversations about your faith with confidence and boldness. Check out our new six-week evangelism study for small groups, Engage Your World, A Practical Guide to Having Spiritual Conversations in Everyday Life. We are starting two virtual small groups that will go through the study online together. You can sign-up here. You will learn practical tips for becoming more confident and sharing your faith with your friends and family. Click here to sign-up today!