God is my conscience, Jesus lives in my heart… this blog is about what I see, what I think, what I do and how I serve God
Some Practical Ways to Share our Faith; included in September 2015 Issue of the Kingswood Trumpet
29 August 2015Posted by on
Most of us are intimidated by the idea of sharing our faith. Jesus never intended for the Great Commission (Matthew 28:16-20) to be an impossible burden. We were created to be witnesses of Jesus presence in our lives through the natural outcome of how we live our lives.
God made it simple for us to be God’s witnesses. Notice I did not say that God made it easy to be God’s witnesses. Simple does not equal easy. Here are some practical ways to witness to our faith in Jesus as we live our lives.
Be genuine. Most of us want to help others, but knowing what to say and how to say it is a different matter. Saying something in a way that ushers peace and brings someone closer to God is difficult because when we don’t know what to say, sometimes we appear insincere or phony. All of us can spot insincerity from a mile away.
Treat people with dignity and respect. Jesus treated people well, even when they mistreated Him. I have seen men and women from all walks of life turn their lives around simply because someone reminded them that they are children of God created to be the best version of what God created them to be, and then treated them accordingly.
Become a model of encouragement. When we are drowning we do not need a swimming lesson, we need a life preserver. There is nothing worse than someone trying to nag you about something going on in your life when all you can think about is finding a way to fix it. In those times, the last thing we need to see is someone carrying a Bible and acting like they know exactly what you need and how you feel. In those times of high anxiety and frustration we need a friend with a calming spirit, a listening ear and caring heart. Be that friend.
Find ways to be a blessing to others. This plants seeds of hope in the lives of those we help, and encourages us as well. It also demonstrates that you are the genuine article because it reflects your beliefs. There is a message in living your faith in tangible and concrete ways. ” …by their fruits you will know them” (Matthew 7:20).
Become a model of forgiveness. Nothing creates division, hostility, and turmoil more than unwillingness to forgive the people who hurt you. Of course, there will be times when you are absolutely right. But being right does not give you a free pass to punish, humiliate, or embarrass someone else
Don’t compromise your beliefs. We are called to be followers of Jesus; we are not called to be doormats. Situations happen every day where we need to negotiate things; in those times compromise is expected. It is our challenge to find those compromises needed to address the problems that we face, without compromising our faith. It is up to each one of us to show that being a Christian means living a life of integrity.
Grace under pressure. One of the best ways to share our faith is to stay focused and positive through the trials that all of us experience from time to time. When Peter got out of the boat to walk on water (Matthew 14:22-33), he was able to do so only while he kept his eyes on Jesus. When your neighbors see that you deal with difficulties in your life gracefully, they too want to experience that grace and peace. On the other hand, we cannot say a lot about our faith if all our neighbors see are the tops of our heads as we sink under water.
I want to close this reflection with the words commonly attributed to St. Francis of Assisi, “Preach the Gospel at all times and when necessary use words.” (1182-1226)