Ministry Musings: Making Christ Known (3)

Before we leave our brief consideration of conversational evangelism, I want to be sure to emphasize that sometimes our “conversation” is an action—an act of compassion and/or service.  An act of love.

A lot of people think that religion in general and Christianity in particular is “just words.”  And they pretty much figure that when we’re done talking, and they sweat us out, we’ll leave them alone and move on to another “target.”

More and more, I believe evangelism is simply befriending another—that’s right, just being a friend.  No plan, no program, no presentation—just friendship.

We make Christ known by simply valuing another human being.  Becoming their friend means there is no “rush” to accomplish anything in particular.  Being a friend means we’re there for whatever comes up, and there for the long-haul.

Some of the best evangelists I know are those who just “live” for Christ.  No pretence.  No pressure.  Just human-to-human contact and compassion.

It sounds a lot like what Jesus said, “If you even give one cup of cold water in my name, you’ve given me.”

As we enter the season of Pentecost—the long season of “ordinary time”—we can all decide to foster a friendship, or start one.  And as we do, Jesus will be there, in the midst.

(Oh, by the way—-being a friend works well on people who are already Christian, but need a “Jesus act” in their life in some way).

About jstevenharper

Retired seminary professor, who taught for 32 years in the disciplines of Spiritual Formation and Wesley Studies. Author and co-author of 31 books. Also a retired Elder in The Florida Annual Conference of The United Methodist Church
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