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, Ã¢â‚¬Å“even I could do that!Ã¢â‚¬Â
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.
- ItÃ¢â‚¬â„¢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 neighborÃ¢â‚¬â„¢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. IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m looking for opportunities to engage people. IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m inquiring, exploring, and seeking evidence that God is at work in peopleÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s lives.
This week I encouraged you to try it. I also said weÃ¢â‚¬â„¢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 youÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re taxed for sharing your faith! Should God bless us with the privilege of leading someone to Christ, weÃ¢â‚¬â„¢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 GodÃ¢â‚¬â„¢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.