Ordinary Attempts

I was a little giddy the first time I read Jim Henderson describing the seemingly little things that nudge people toward peace with God. Eventually becoming distilled in his book Evangelism Without Additives, his ideas had me thinking, “even I could do that!” Henderson convinced me that walking in the world with Jesus, I could still be me. Less-than-bold ambassadors take heart with phrases like:
  • Be yourself. It will intrigue people.
  • Do what is doable and count what really counts.
  • Count conversations, not conversions.
  • Be aware and be available.
  • It’s an attempt, not an accomplishment.
  • No extra credit for succeeding and no demerits for failing.
Nothing could be more ordinary than my recent attempts. Philip and I owned up to breaking the head off our neighbor’s St. Francis with our basketball. I struck up a conversation with a postal worker over his prominent display of family portraits. But my oh-so-ordinary attempts are changing me. I’m looking for opportunities to engage people. I’m inquiring, exploring, and seeking evidence that God is at work in people’s lives. This week I encouraged you to try it. I also said we’re going to start marking the attempts. Each Sunday a penny goes in the jar for ordinary attempts. I know of no other church where you’re taxed for sharing your faith! Should God bless us with the privilege of leading someone to Christ, we’ll note that with a rose. Hype? No. No way. There are two reasons for our public display. First, it serves as a discipline to faithfully acknowledge God’s going before us. Second, by our testimony we will encourage and spur each other on in joy. Lord, teach us the true size of small talk.

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