Evangelism Is Scary

Confession: I've been a Christian for over 20 years, but I struggle with evangelism.  A lot.  I know I'm not alone in this, because I've recently heard a statistic that only 2% of the church shares their faith on a regular basis.  Yikes!  That's embarrassing.

I like to think that sharing the gospel in written form on this blog counts for something, but let's be honest, if I really are about those around me who are headed for Hell, I should be willing to speak up in person too.  But I get scared, and I don't know what to say.  It's a problem.  I've been feeling convicted about this for a couple years, but it's so hard to know where to start.

After praying about this for a while, I feel like the Lord brought a couple resources into my life in the last few months that are making me feel a lot less terrified of evangelizing.  I was going to share about all this in one of my life update posts, but then I thought, hey, evangelism is an important enough topic that it certainly deserves it's own post.  And I know some of you out there have the same struggles as me.  Speak up in the comments!

Resource #1 - Wretched Radio

In December we started listening to a podcast called Wretched Radio.  Derek and I are officially hooked now.  Todd Friel, the host, has a sarcastic sense of humor that is entertaining, but the meat of his ministry is all tied back to the importance of the gospel and evangelism.  We don't always agree with his style or word choice, but he's very grounded on God's word.  Each week he does a "Witness Wednesday" episode, where he gets random people on the radio and witnesses to them right there.  Just hearing how someone else witnesses to people, in real conversations, has made me feel so much more prepared for the moment when I might get a chance to witness to someone myself.  And feeling prepared is half the battle, right?

Resource #2 - Living Waters

On a related note, Friel started this part of the podcast with Ray Comfort, who has a whole Youtube channel where he witnesses to strangers.  His boldness in sharing the gospel is so inspiring, and makes the whole thing seem less scary and more doable.  Derek and I could sit for hours and watch his witnessing videos.  You can see all those here, but be prepared to get sucked in for a ridiculous amount of time.

Resource #3 - Successful Christian Parenting by John MacArthur

I've mentioned Successful Christian Parenting before, but this is my go-to book for refocusing on evangelizing my children - who are the people I want to point to the Lord the most, for obvious reasons!  That's really the whole point of Christian parenting.  I think this book would be great in particular for anyone who has children in their life that they want to lead to Jesus, even if you aren't a parent yet, and the approach he explains in this book would be helpful in witnessing to someone of any age.  I'm reading it again this year.


Evangelism is one of those things that I think a lot of us put off because we don't think we have the "gift" of evangelism.  But the thing about spiritual gifts is that they are often things that we are supposed to do whether we have a "gift" for it or not.  We're all supposed to be practicing discernment, hospitality, mercy, etc.  And we're all supposed to be evangelizing.  Plus, this is purely a guess, but I imagine that since we know God is not willing that any should perish but all should come to repentance (2 Peter 3:9), He probably has gifted more than 2% of the church with the gift of evangelism...and maybe a lot of us just don't realize it because we're too scared or lazy to give it a try.

That would be me. But I'm working on it, and I wanted to encourage my fellow sisters in Christ to work on it too.  Checking out these resources is an easy place to start.

Do you have a hard time with evangelism too?  Are you trying to work on it?  What resources have helped you?

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Bekah said...

I'm so with you, Callie! I'm much better at discipleship than evangelism, but I was convicted last year to do more evangelism when I speak, so I've been working on that! Also, our church is making this our entire focus for this year, and our small groups just started studying The Master Plan of Evangelism by Robert Coleman. It's a book written several years ago, so it's a bit academic sounding, but I think it's good timeless wisdom.

Michelle said...

Thank you for writing this!! I struggle SO much with evangelism. I try to share the gospel in writing at times, but I often feel convicted for not sharing enough and skipping out on obvious opportunities because I feel too embarrassed. James and I LOVE Wretched Radio! I have moments of disagreeing with Todd, but overall I have learned so much from him. He’s fantastic.

Amanda said...

Thanks for sharing! I haven't heard of those podcasts but will check it out. I think most Christians struggle with evangelism. I do think sharing your faith in writing like this does make an impact, but we do need to be bold to speak in person also. I feel conviction about this myself!

Elizabeth said...

I've been a Christian my whole life and had periods where I was heavily involved in evangelism. So I think I am in more of a disillusioned/burned-out period of not really seeing fruit and not knowing how to go about sharing my faith after trying lots of different methods. I'm a missionary but in more of a tent-making/friendship evangelism kind of way, not constantly doing outreach events. I'm familiar with Ray Comfort as we studied his methods in college. I do believe that if a person doesn't display repentance, it may be a false conversion. However, I've never been quite that bold. What has worked for me is making an evangelism journal where I write down specific names and pray for those people, and approach each conversation with them prayerfully. At the same time, though, I would advise against seeing people as "projects" or reading too much into each little comment. Only God truly knows what's going on in their hearts and I like thinking of the big picture with different factors leading them to Christ where I play just a small role. I do try to be clear about my faith when I first meet people, so I find it hard to continue from there if they are cold towards Christianity or quick to state their religious preferences. I am all for being bold, and I think that it's good to feel convicted! I'm going to think about this more, too.

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