So if you are going to impact anyone for Christ, the most effective approach will be through friendships with those who need to know Christ. The following questions will help you get started:
- Who do I already know that needs Jesus?
- How will they know that I care?
- What have I gotta share?
1. FOCUS ON YOUR RELATIONSHIPS WITH NON-BELIEVERS
Think about the circle of relationships that you already have. Draw several circles on a piece of paper and identify each circle as a specific group of people with whom you have repeated contact over something other than faith or religion.
Write the name of the specific group in the center of each circle. If you know those neighbors who live adjacent to and directly across from your home, label one of the circles “Neighbors.” You could also consider –
- your workplace
- contacts with adults through your children’s activities (school, sports, music, etc.)
- your hobbies or recreation (not something you do alone; something you already do or could do routinely with people – biking, kayaking, scrapbooking, etc,)
- rotary or a community organization if you meet together monthly or more
- your fitness center (if you interact with the same people routinely)
- playgroups for your kids
- any activity that gives you routine contact with people who don’t know Christ personally
Challenge: Too many believers spend too much time with Christians. Ask yourself: “What do I need to stop doing so that I can start spending more time with non-believers?”
What is one new thing that you could do to give you routine contact (weekly) with 8-10 new people who don’t know Christ?
Next, write the first names of individuals that you know personally in each circle who are not yet Christians.
2. SHOW YOU CARE!
It has been said: “People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.”
Think of specific ways that you can demonstrate care to specific individuals listed above. Consider the following ways to demonstrate care:
- Acts of service – how can you meet a genuine need?
- Quality time – how could you spend time with someone?
- Affirmation – how can you encourage someone?
- Tangible gifts – what could you give someone to show you care?
Who do you know that may be receptive?
What can you do to show that person that you care?
3. SHARE YOUR OWN GRACE STORY!
One of the most powerful tools in leading someone to Christ is your own story of how by God’s grace you came to personally know Jesus. Take a moment to think about how you came to believe in Christ and the changes that have taken place in your life now that you are a Christian. Using these points, write out your own story just the way you would share it with a friend. Make the story clear enough that the person hearing it would know how to surrender their life to Christ.
- Before I surrendered my life to Christ, I lived and thought this way
- How I came to believe in Jesus (be specific)
- After I became a Christian, these positive changes took place
As you reflect on your “grace story” – ask God to give you an opportunity to share it with at least one person this week. Pray for two or three whom you would particularly like to tell about Jesus Christ in your neighborhood, at work, or at school.
Can you think of a verse that helped you to surrender your life to Christ? When you share your “grace story” – tell others what that verse means to you.
“I am convinced that the world is more eager to hear our message than we are to deliver it. Never in my ministry have I seen such responsiveness and receptivity to the Gospel as in recent days.”
– Dr. Howard Hendricks