First Baptist Church, Huntsville, AL
Sunday, September 14, 2014
GOOD NEWS NOTES - Week 12
There are many ways to share with others about Christ. For me, I enjoy doing "servant evangelism" a method of showing kindness to others. Servant evangelism seems to fit my shape. For six weeks I experimented with going to businesses and asking to clean their restrooms. I usually had some strange looks, but most of the time I had their immediate attention. Many could not believe what I was offering to do. After a few moments of trying to decide if this guy really wants to clean our restrooms they usually would say "if you want to, go ahead." After the cleaning, I would thank them and wait for the question. Almost all would say why are you doing this? I would smile and say I am out today showing God's love in a practical way, or showing how God's grace is free. For me it is a fun way to show people God's love. Many times it would lead to further discussion about God's love. For you, cleaning restrooms may not fit your shape but other kinds of servant evangelism may. We will be doing several types of servant evangelism in our community in the months ahead. For our church we will call it "First Serve." In December we will go to a 10-block radius of our church to pass out some free goodies and invite people to come to the Living Christmas Tree.
Another way to share with others is outlined in the little book by Rebecca Manley Pippert, "Talking about Jesus without Sounding Religious." She suggests that we can best gain the trust of others by three steps. The first step is listening. We have already discussed how important this is. Certainly by listening we learn about the person that enables us to do the next step. The second step is arousing or stimulating interest. Just like cleaning the restrooms I was able to arouse interest. Jesus did this with the woman at the well with the living water, he told Nicodemus about being born-again, and every parable pricked the interest of the hearers and some were able to understand a spiritual truth. After the first two steps then we should be able to relate the gospel in a way that will communicate to their need. These three steps may take some time. The third step is sometimes the hardest but is necessary for people to be able to struggle with the need for a commitment.
Josh Hunt is a Sunday School growth expert. He suggests that any Sunday School class can double in a year. One method to do this is that members dedicate their Friday nights to their missing friends. In a very relaxed atmosphere of a home BBQ he says to invite some Christian friends and one or two missing friends. During the evening spend some time introducing each other and let them tell a little about themselves. Some may include their role in the church or some other mention of a spiritual note. It may be that saying a prayer before the meal is all the spiritual touch for the first night. Josh says if groups of Christians will follow these simple steps for building purposeful relationship, this will lead very naturally to growth in your classes.
Scripture - I Corinthians 9:22b-23a - Paul said, "I have become all things to all men so that by all possible means I might save some. I do all this for the sake of the gospel."
Action - What are some ways you can share with others? Spend some time praying for leadership.
Prayer - Lord, please lead me in discovering the best way to develop relationships with missing people. Help me in my faith so I might be like Paul to be all things to all men.
Next Week -