By Kelly Carr
Have you ever heard a sermon or conversation at church that involves the words witnessing or the even more stately evangelism? Those sound intimidating to many people (including me!). We might have visions of street-corner preachers shouting or holding signs. We may have visions of knocking on doors and giving tracts to strangers.
Those methods might work out at times, but they definitely fit only a certain percentage of Christians who feel comfortable in such practices. And there are only certain types of people who will respond to such approaches.
That’s why I felt encouraged to read the articles we have this week in our See Your Community series. Sean Kelly talks about what our mission truly is—what we are asked to do (love people) vs. what God is going to do (change hearts). And Blake Oliver talks about the power of eating a meal with someone.
That’s the thing—when we befriend our neighbors through meals and conversations and living alongside one another, relationships grow. When we spend time with people, we naturally talk about the different aspects of our lives. We don’t have to approach every conversation with some big speech about baptism or the theological nuances of sin and grace. We simply live life with others. As we demonstrate our faith, others will notice. Neighbors might have questions during tough times. Topics will arise, offering opportunities to explain God’s truth. If we are available and have established deep relationships, we will be the ones others can turn to and rely upon for encouragement and hope.
Likely you are already building relationships without even thinking about it. These friendships are a form of witnessing and evangelism. So don’t feel intimidated by technical terms. As you simply live out the gospel, God will work through the love and kindness you show in your community.