Christians who have been saved a long time really have trouble with evangelism for the same reasons. They have not been fish for a very long time. In fact, they might not even know any fish! Even worse, they forget they were fish at all, or worse still they ask, “What is a fish?” (Fish: all those unsaved people around us who are so close that the most probable person to reach them is us.)
We sometimes seem a bit alien to the lost around us. “Yeah, the aliens abducted Mike the other day. Haven’t seen him since then.” This happens when we only focus on individual conversions without further discipleship that eventually affects entire families and societies.
How then do people get saved? Does their car break down outside of our church Sunday morning? Oh the methods that we could talk about until we were tangled in fishing line. How did I even get saved? Someone cared to share. Let’s begin with the heart.
- We need to love the lost enough to want to reach them. A church that loves the lost will grow regardless of clumsy outreach methods. However, the best equipped church with no heart for the lost is as powerful as a Ferrari without gas.
- People need to see our concern for them by actions of caring rather than persistent invitations to events. Instead of gathering Christians at the church picnic, invite your neighbor over to grill a burger.
- Finally, we need to have an awareness that the only thing that keeps us above water is the grace of God. Yes, we still smell like fish sometimes to those around us. We were once lost and without hope.