September 23, 2010


It has only been relatively recently that I started working at a 'real' job. One that could be rightly called my career, that pays me a wage I can live on. So my wife and I decided we needed to do two things; one we needed to start an RRSP (Registered Retirement Savings Plan) for ourselves and two we needed to start an RESP (Registered Education Savings Plan) for our son. In short we got into the investment market. I am putting money aside, the bank is doing something with it with the goal to make more money. That is probably not the most intelligent description of investment that you have seen but that is more or less my understanding of what is going on.

What I am getting a better understanding of is investing in non-Christians. Let me back up some. Not to long ago I was in a room of people that where in the process of deciding if I was called to be a pastor or not. People asked about my understanding of who God is, the nature and state of humanity and a whole host of very complex questions that should not be boiled down to a few sentence answer. However I was doing pretty good if I do say so myself.

But then came the question I should have known was coming, a question about evangelism method, a question that I despise. They asked me how would I lead someone to Christ. I know the answer they wanted, they wanted to hear me say I would use something like the Romans Road or the Four Spiritual Laws. But I just couldn't bring myself to tell them that. There is something about canned evangelism that just makes me uneasy. It just seems so much like seeing a person as a generic non-Christian, instead of a true 3D person with their own wants, fears, questions and needs. I stammered out an answer I have now forgotten, but I couldn't shake the question. If not the Romans Road than what?

See People As People Not Prospects 

So I have found myself thinking about evangelism like this;

I am trying to share the gospel of Jesus but to do that I need to have two things from the person I wish to share it with; 1. Comfort and 2. Credibility. This is to say the person I want to share the gospel with needs to be comfortable with me and I need to be credible in their eyes, as opposed to just some wacko off the street. Comfort and credibility are the returns I get on my investment of, time, respect and interest. Which is to say I have to spent time getting to know that person, I need to respect who they are and their points of views and I need to take an interest in them as a person not as a prospective conversion client. As I give these things to non-Christians my banked comfort and credibility goes up and over time raises to a level that I can share to gospel naturally.

I won't lie, this really does take a long time. And that is the 'problem' with this method. I can sit down with someone I know well enough to have a coffee with and bust out the four spiritual laws in 15 minutes. But to gain enough comfort and credibility to really share the gospel that takes months, or years. Is this way of thinking of evangelism better, I don't know. But it's all I got, short of reading off a tract, which makes me want to throw up.