Sharing the Gospel

Discussion in 'Pastoral Resources' started by Lowly Layman, Dec 28, 2017.

  1. Lowly Layman

    Lowly Layman Well-Known Member Anglican

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    Hi all,

    I hope this Christmastide is blessing you.

    I recently met a gentleman from Michigan in a gas station parking lot who was on his way to Florida for vacation. He greeted me with a smile and a heartfelt "Merry Christmas!" and handed me a small slip of paper and went back to pumping his gas.

    The paper read that the gentleman's name was Mike and that he was trying to share the gospel with at least 500 people during the month of December. Then in a very brief but, imho, effective way he shared the gospel. On the reverse side, he invited the reader to pray the sinner's prayer, repent of his sins, go to a bible believing church, and get baptized.

    Now, I recognize that there are probably drawbacks to his methods in the eyes of many forum members. But I must say, methods aside, he was doing the work Our Lord committed us -- each of us -- to do. In one 5 minute gas up, he shared his faith with more people than I've shared with all year. I was ashamed. And rightfully so I believe.

    Then I got to thinking. What Anglican sources are there available for helping us share our faith? I've been searching, and I could just be missing them, but I can't find any. There are many resources for helping to make those who are already Christian into Anglicans but where are the tools for sharing the Gospel with non-believers?

    If you have any, please pass them along to me. I think my New Years resolution is to be a better worker for the Lord of the harvest.
     
  2. Ide

    Ide Active Member

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    As someone who was on the receiving end of crappy evangelization techniques for years, I can say that the approach this man is taking isn't very effective. It is only effective if you have a context of what Christianity is about. If you are not a Christian, all those instructions are is utter nonsense. Just dropping off a flyer with instructions which indicate that spirituality can be reduced to a recipe like in a cookbook isn't helpful.

    I think that one thing that I ran into during the many years attempting to evangelizing me was Christians telling me what I needed instead of listening and praying for, and with, me. I think that the old school approach of just selling people fire insurance- "you're a sinner- you need Jesus- prayer this prayer- now your saved from hellfire!"- is no longer effective in our society. People have heard this twist on the message over and over again- and it holds no power. How can it when the people preaching it from TV ask for private jets, money, cars etc... ? The Gospel is true, but I think that we Christians in the U.S. have corrupted the method of delivery.

    In another thread I commented on how I've never recalled seeing anyone from the TEC just show up and willing to pray for people in a public space- at a park, a trail, children's play ground etc.. What about having morning prayer from the BCP at a public corner? Or with a group of people in the park? I think that Christians need to work on re-entering public spaces by willing to be the light of the Gospel to people and not just preach at them about the Gospel. Ask people if you can pray for them, listen to their needs and pray for them in the name of Jesus. I think even having a priest in public would be helpful- they are all hidden away anymore in the churches and never seen!

    We need to evangelize through beauty and love and truth. The Anglican church has the most beautiful prayers in the English language; we should be saying them publicly and not just hold up in the churches alone. I think if people see that Christian love and beauty can be experienced, then their hearts will be more open to the truth of the Gospel. The prayers aren't just pretty and trite because they are simply well written, they are beautiful because they are true.

    For Quiet Confidence

    O God of peace, who hast taught us that in returning and rest we shall be saved, in quietness and confidence shall be our strength: By the might of thy Spirit lift us, we pray thee, to thy presence, where we may be still and know that thou art God; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

    I would much rather have had someone pray that with me than tell me I'm a sinner an awaiting hellfire while trying to give me a pamphlet. I think the prayer is more likely to show the mercy of God manifested through his church and let a person experience Jesus directly.
     
  3. Ide

    Ide Active Member

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