Advertisers know that the greatest marketing strategy in all the world is word-of-mouth advertising. That’s because we always share what we love.
If you’ve found a great restaurant, you’re most likely to say to your friends, “I was at this place the other night, and you’ve gotta go there! It was so good!”
Or if you bought a new phone that you love, you might say to people you know, “Oh, you’ve got to get this!”
If it’s so easy to share what we love, then why do most of us struggle with sharing our faith and love of Christ?
I’m baffled sometimes why I have a hard time sharing the most important love relationship in my life. God saved me, forgave me, gave me a new life and infinite grace, yet I find myself in situations where evangelism is difficult.
We often believe a lie.
The father of lies is Satan. And he wants to get very subtle lies ingrained into our thinking so they become the lens through which we look at other people. This lens keeps us from loving people and sharing Christ with them.
The Bible says we’re in a spiritual battle for the souls of people. “The weapons of our warfare, or the weapons that we fight with, are not of this world. On the contrary, the weapons we have, have divine power to demolish strongholds. We demolish arguments and every pretention that’s set up against the knowledge of God and we take captive every thought and make it obedient to Christ.” (2 Corinthians 10:4-5)
Here are three lies – or “strongholds”– that we often believe that go “against the knowledge of God,” and three truths we can use to combat them.
Lie #1: People aren’t open.
Most of the time, we’ve already determined in our minds that people aren’t open. Since we assume this, we just think, “Why bother talking to them?”
Truth: Jesus, and the research, would say that most people do want to hear about Christ’s love more than we’re willing to tell them.
But Jesus said this, “I tell you, open your eyes and look at the fields! They are ripe for harvest. Even now the one who reaps draws a wage and harvests a crop for eternal life, so that the sower and the reaper may be glad together.” (John 4:35-36)
A recent study has shown that 66 percent of unchurched adults ages 18-29 agree that Jesus died and came back to life. That means two out of three people are ready to talk about Jesus!
Most unchurched people don’t have a problem with Jesus! They do have a problem with the Church acting like hypocrites – preaching one thing but living something completely different.
We don’t have to have it all together. We just need to live like Christians and start having some spiritual conversations with those around us. That means getting creative, going deeper and sharing our faith.
Lie #2: Sharing Jesus’ love is reserved for spiritual superstars and people with outgoing personalities.
Many of us believe, down deep, that the power of our message is in the messenger. So, if you’re not an outgoing person with great people skills, there won’t be any results.
Truth: The power is in the gospel message, not the messenger.
The Apostle Paul says in Romans 1:16, “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ for it is the power of God for salvation to the Jew first and also to the Gentile.”
Lie #3: Witnessing is something I do versus something that I am.
Some of us come from church backgrounds where we’re taught to pray, read our Bibles and witness. It’s just something we do! And most of us feel guilty that we don’t do it enough. But that isn’t what the Bible teaches.
Truth: It’s not about whether we do or don’t. What it boils down to is this – are we being good witnesses or bad witnesses?
Before He ascended into heaven, Jesus said, “But you, my followers, will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you. And you will be My witnesses…” (Acts 1:8)
Notice Jesus said we will “be” His witnesses.
People need to see the message of the gospel through our life. And they need to hear the message of the gospel through our words. It’s those things together.
Never assume that anybody is outside of what God might do, as He desires for “all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth.” (1 Tim 2:4)
To learn more about how to make sharing your faith a part of your lifestyle, check out Chip’s series, Share the Love.
Founder & Teaching Pastor, Living on the Edge
Chip Ingram is the CEO and teaching pastor of Living on the Edge, an international teaching and discipleship ministry. A pastor for over thirty years, Chip has a unique ability to communicate truth and challenge people to live out their faith. He is the author of many books, including The Real God, Culture Shock and The Real Heaven. Chip and his wife, Theresa, have four grown children and twelve grandchildren and live in California.More Articles by Chip