Hey! I hope you are having a good day. If not, I hope that it gets better and pray that God gives you the strength to carry the burdens that this world places on you. There is something that amazes me about the Gospel: that it frees us from the bondage of this fallen world.
I have been looking through Deuteronomy, preparing for our study for the Youth next month, and it’s been awesome. There is one particular passage (Deut. 7:7-8) that states God did not choose Israel because of their size or power in the world. In fact, Israel was the fewest of all peoples and God chose them anyway. This type of grace is God’s signature throughout Scripture. God, because of who He is, chooses people no matter how insignificant they may seem and no matter how small they are.
As Christians, so many of us seem to condemn others or be overly critical when someone doesn’t quite live up to our standards. If God has chosen us despite our insufficiency, it seems we should extend the same degree of freeing grace to those around us. I think this is really where outreach and evangelism begins.
During my time in ministry, I have been a part of quite a few different types of “outreach” in different churches. I have gone door-to-door. I have helped plan huge city-wide outreach events. I have partnered with schools and small businesses. I have done social media evangelism and online debates. I have done church commercials and toured promoting Christ in my music. I have built an outreach program that was based in the Sunday School ministry; but by far the most successful form of outreach I have seen begins in the home with families who love Christ.
Now I am not saying that these other forms of outreach are wrong. In fact, I think we, as a church, need to do everything we can to reach people with the Gospel; but why would we do all these and refuse the oldest and most basic form of outreach there is: building good relationships.
A couple weeks ago, we invited all of our neighbors to our house so we could meet them. One family was able to come and we began building a relationship with that family. It is possible that we might have made this connection through some church event, but I find it unlikely. Hopefully in the near future, they will join us here at Gorman. My heart in this matter is simple. In order to reach the lost, we have to make connections outside of the church and work on building those relationships even after we make those connections.
In this post, I am including a guide to practical evangelism. In it there are ideas you could use to begin building relationships with neighbors, coworkers and schoolmates. If you find that you are too busy to build relationships with the people around you, perhaps it may be time to simplify your life.
I have often struggled with over-commitment in my life. I see something that needs to be done and I commit myself whether or not I have time. I have had to realize that sometimes it really is good to say no and sometimes I have to give up some things that I really love doing in order to accomplish the work that God has for me on this earth. In those times when we have to give something up, God makes a great promise:
And everyone who has left houses, brothers or sisters, father or mother, children, or fields because of My name will receive 100 times more and will inherit eternal life (Matthew 19:29).
When we give something up for the sake of the Gospel, God’s promise is that it will be repaid 100 fold.
I hope that you will use this guide and that you will commit to in home outreach. This is truly the greatest way that the Gospel will spread in our community. I believe that our church will grow as we begin truly reaching people with the Gospel of Christ.
If there is anything you need as you make this commitment, please let me know. I will help in any way that I can. Above all, let Christ be glorified and let those around us see His grace and mercy through us!