Friday, May 7, 2010

Accidental Evangelist

About a year ago I was pulled over by a police officer for crossing a double line when exiting 30 on to Hulen. I will not confess to actually doing this but that is not the point. After the officer pulled me over making my heart bounce out of my chest and my hand shake so hard I could I could hardly sign my name on the ticket, I started an important conversation. I asked him about another Ft.Worth police officer that taught my son's Sunday school class at St. Matthew and he said that he knew him. He mentioned that he had been at church on Sunday and I replied "Well then I won't invite you to church since you have a church home." He looked at me puzzle and said" I go to St. Matthew." Talk about embarrassing but in my defense he did have a motorcycle helmet on and we have over 900 people on the weekend at our church. But this started a joke about me at church one that I am proud of.

You see I invite people I meet to church all the time. Other mothers at karate, Heather who set up my checking account at the bank, Charles the young man at Home Depot who helped me get the right supplies to fix my heater. Oh and the officer who pulled me over for not having my lights on. Don't ask! Some of these people I get to know over a course of months and some I invite on the first meeting.

At the Diaconate meeting last night, Jeff our Asst. Pastor called me the accidental evangelist. I can understand this name. I would never stand before people to talk to a large group of adults about Christ. Oh goodness, I feel ill just thinking about that. Public way! On the other hand, I never intentionally go somewhere with the thought of bringing a new person to church. It just happens. I just want to share with others how much my fellowship at St. Matthew means to me and well I just want to share the love!

This made me think about how adults often find it hard to invite other adults to church. Too often adults feel intimidated to invite coworkers or neighbors. We all have insecurities and this may be one of the areas that you are insecure in. How often does this run through our mind "What will they think of me? Will they think I'm a Bible beater or Holy Roller? I don't want to turn them off." Aaah... can you say even adults fear rejection. Our spiritual life is so important to us and our identity it is often something we don't want to put out there for rejection or ridicule.

Asking others to come to worship and fellowship can be easy but you have to develop a relationship with people. You have to be able to be approachable and genuine and nonthreatening. You need to understand when to ask and when to sit back and just let them see the love in you.

I will post more over the next few weeks on this topic. One to help others get to that point but also to evaluate for me if I want to be an accidental evangelist or an intentional evangelist.


CherryBlossomMJ said...

One, can you update my address on your blog list from cherryblossommj.blogspot to ? Thanks!

Two, this is something that I can understand and relate to. In the end of highschool and college some people called me FISH for a nickname, because they said I was always talking about Christ. Outward evangelism is something that makes me nervous to even think about, but bringing into everyday actions and conversations is something that I am definitely capable of. About four years after high school I had more than one friend call me up to say that they were thankful for the gentle reminder of Christ I left for them, without pushing.

It seems to me that part of me wishes that I had heard that back then, especially because those were some pretty stressful years for me. But then at the same time, hearing it now is probably more valuable to me. It is a pat on the back that is not necessary obviously, but sure is nice.

Donna said...

I think it is awesome that you were out doing that at such a young age. Really if you think about it we are more ripe to the Gospel in our teens. I wasn't one who felt comfortable but I remember those friends in high school who invited me to church my junior year. I know that this is when I really started my walk with Christ even though at the age of eight I became a Christian.

Jodie said...

Awesome post, Donna. You're braver than you think you are!

Holly said...

I remember the story of you getting that ticket, but that is not my point here... I am so glad that your "accidential evangelism" has brought us to St. Matthew. You can put this karate mom on your list of successes!

Ginny said...

Your just chock full of reminders. I don't ask nearly often enough. Thanks. ;)

Ginny said...

s/b... Your'e. What can I say it's 0520. Back to bed for a bit. zzzzz

Ginny Hamlin said...

I'm more awake now and have committed this to memory. ;)