I shared in my last post how helpful it has been to clarify high value activities and critical success indicators. One of those high value activities is sharing the gospel. There are lots of ways to share the gospel, and its better to do the right thing imperfectly than not to do it at all.
Luke 10:1-12 has been a key passage for our ministry as we have sought to be more effective in engaging students who are far from God. There are lots of noteworthy things happening in this passage, but there are 3 key components I want to highlight.
- Go in pairs
- Offer prayer
- Offer the gospel
Jesus always seemed to send out his disciples in pairs. That’s good enough. Beyond that, it’s better for leadership development to have more than one person doing something. We encourage each other as we go along. We help each other out as we engage people.
Jesus directed his disciples to care for people before trying to share with them. We want to let people know we actually do care for them before we start trying to engage them with the gospel. It is both/and, not either/or. In order to offer prayer, we simply say,
“Hey, I’m Puck and this is my friend Jim. We are out trying to care for people on campus – could we pray for you?”
It really is that simple. When someone allows us to pray for them, we say a 10 second prayer in Jesus’ name. We don’t use churchy language and we keep it really simple and to the point.
The whole point of this encounter is to share the gospel and offer new life in Christ to anyone and everyone. Most people have never actually had someone share the gospel with them personally. They may have encountered it in a church setting, or picked it up piece by piece, but we want to give everyone the chance to hear it personally in a simple and direct way. We make the transition by saying something like
“Has anyone ever shared the gospel with you?”
Seriously. Other good options include
“We are also interested in where people are spiritually. Who would you say Jesus is to you?”
“Would you say you are near to God or far from God? Would you like to be near to God? Can I show you a simple picture that helped me become near to God?”
This process of going 2 by 2 and offering prayer and the gospel has been unbelievably helpful for us this year. It helps take the fear out of the equation and it develops a culture of excitement and adventure in disciple making.