An Evangelism Chicken

I don't think the world hates me enough.

That may seem like an odd statement to those who don't know where I'm coming from. But as a Christian, the Bible promises that the world will hate me (Matthew 10:22).

Or at least they should hate me, if I'm doing my job right.

But if I'm honest with myself, I really don't think I'm very hated. I just go about my daily business, the world goes about theirs, and we don't think about each other very much.

I would hope the people I encounter on a daily basis would be able to tell that I'm a Christian by the references I make to my faith in daily conversation (few as they are), or by the way I live my life. I would hope they would be able to tell that something is different.

But that's not really enough, is it?

Jesus commands us to "go and make disciples of all nations" (Matthew 28:19). But they can't really be made disciples if I'm not willing to say something, can they?

I really struggle with evangelism. I hate that I struggle with evangelism. How hard is it to just ask someone what they believe? How hard is it to just say what I believe? How is it that something that is the most important thing in my life is so hard to talk about with others? Something is wrong here.

I could go into the whole, "not everyone has the gift of evangelism" thing. And although I think that it is true that some have a real gift for reaching others with the gospel, it's not a good excuse. Because evangelism is something we are all called to do, whether we are good at it or not.

I'm not good at evangelism. I'm not sure exactly what it is that I'm afraid of. I think I'm most afraid that I'll try to reach out to someone by telling them about Jesus, and they'll ask a question that I won't know how to answer, or I'll stumble over my words and make the gospel seem weak. I'm afraid I'll let everyone down and misrepresent my Lord if I don't say the right thing.

But then, I'm really placing all the emphasis on what I can do to bring others to Christ when I think that way, when in reality, I can't do a thing. The Holy Spirit is the one who convicts people of their sin, the Holy Spirit is the one who opens their eyes and brings them to Jesus. Don't I think He's big enough to use my words, flawed as they may be, for His ultimate purpose?

I wish I could say that this is something I will get better at, but I honestly don't know. I feel as if fear rules me in this.

I do know, however, that perfect love casts out fear. God has shown me His perfect love by sending Jesus to live, die, and rise from the dead in order to save me - and it's wrong of me not to share that perfect love with others.

I wish the world hated me more. Because if they did, it would mean that I would be doing my job - I would be speaking about Jesus to those I know, sharing with them how they can be saved, and reflecting the glory of God to those around me.

Unfortunately, I fall woefully short of doing any of these things. The world and I go about our business, not thinking about each other much at all. And I'm not even sure how to fix it.

Lord, please help me to be bold in telling others about You. I have not been following your command to "go and make disciples", and I don't even know where to start - but You do, and I pray You would show me what to do, and what to say. Forgive me for ignoring your clear commandment in this are, and thank You for showing me grace, even when I continually fail.

Does anyone else struggle with this? And what has helped you become a brighter light for Christ?


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Amber Hansen said...

I'm with you! It's hard to just put yourself out there like that knowing you WILL, most times, be rejected. But it's what we're commanded to do. I'm not sure why I care so much about what other people think when the only thing that matters is eternity and where they'll spend it. That should be more important to me than not looking crazy or weird. So you're not alone in your struggle with boldness!

Natalie {Extraordinary Love} said...

yes yes yes! you hit the nail on the head. WHY is it so hard?! I ask myself that all the time. I don't know! It shouldn't be. I think I'm afraid I'll offend people with the truth. But why should I care? If they are offended then their hearts aren't soft and they will hate me, just as you said, they are supposed to! I so wish I was better at it too. We can just continue God will continue to give us boldness to face the world & share his truth with them! Thanks for your honesty!

Melanie said...

I totally know where your coming from Callie! I always feel like if I try to reach out to a particular individual..that they'll ask a question I dont know the answer to. Its easy I guess to back away from talking to others because of this..but definately not an excuse! I'd be willing to say that your overall example speaks volumes to those around you! Let your light shine on!

Jessie Szmanda said...

Ohhh my gosh I SO feel you Callie! Yes! Evangelism is something I am not good at! Why are we so afraid sometimes to talk about our faith!?

Jessica said...

I struggle with this too. It's so hard to know how to bring it up in a way that's not awkward, and that won't feel judgmental to the other person. I guess my biggest thing I'm working on now is just loving and serving others, so they can see that there's something different about me. I've always heard that quote, (although I don't know who it's by!) "Preach the gospel at all times; if necessary, use words." I think if we're just pouring out our love to others, that is one way to evangelize.

also, I pray a lot about it, that God will give me the right words to say at the right time, and that he'll give me the courage to say them.

Anne said...

I agree, it is hard. Being involved in younglife has taught me a lot. I am definitely a chicken with you and feel silly giving advice, but one thing I have learned is the old cliche about people don't care how much you know until they know how much you care. Work on building relationships and caring for people. Be intentional about looking for who God would want you to share the gospel with, then be very intentional about loving them and getting to know them. It is so much easier to share Christ with someone you have built a relationship with. Pray like crazy for that person, and as you spend more time with them, chances are your faith is going to come up and you will have the opportunity to talk with them about it. The other good thing is that this is not an awkward forced conversation where someone feels like you are just trying to convert them. I have found that as you go out of your way to love people and build relationships more opportunities to share Christ naturally arise. Hope that is helpful!

Megan said...

Callie, thanks for your honesty! I struggle with this too...it should be what I talk about MOST often with people because it is what matters! Reading this is an encouragement, I really appreciate you sharing this today!

cait said...

Right with you! It's honestly scary to me. I don't know why. And sometimes, I'm so convicted because it's people that I'm the closest to that I'm the most scared to evangelize. I'm such a shy person anyway...and then to throw sharing the gospel in, it's sometimes overwhelming for me. The thing that has helped me to grow (a little) in this...is trying my hardest to do the "little things" I feel God nudging me to do. Such as telling someone I will pray for them when I know they aren't believers. Or asking someone where they go to church and letting them know they are always welcome at ours. I think it's also important to realize how our actions are evangelism too. God promises to trust us with the "big" things if we show faithfulness in the "small". And I'm right with you on your prayer...what precious honesty with your Heavenly Father. Thanks for being a light through your blog! (Isn't it an amazing way to share the love of Christ and how He dwells in your life?)

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