The other day I was walking into Home Depot to purchase new locks for our doors at home. When I walked in I was immediately approached by a man wanting to schedule for me a water test at my home. I tired to kindly tell him no but his immediate response was, “Aren’t you afraid of what your kids may be drinking in the water at your home?” I was kind of upset with his comment. It seemed as though he was using a scare tactic to get me to purchase a product and he had no idea what the water at my home is like. To play off of my fears or even to make it sound like I was a bad father just so that I would consider buying a product made me even more upset. The truth is that maybe his product would improve the water quality at my home, but his tactic did not entice me but rather it turned me away.
The evangelical efforts of the Christian community has suffered from the same sort of marketing. The preacher on the corner yelling the God hates you for you lifestyle or the youth ministry event that has convinced you that hell is the road for you as a sinner unless you repent has missed the point of evangelism. Evangelism from its greek roots means “good news” (εὔ = “good”, ἀγγέλλω = “I bring a message”). We have “good news”! The good news is not about me and its not about trying to manipulate another person. Its about sharing the fact that God loves everyone and that relationship with God can and will make a difference in our lives. Last Sunday during worship we shared how evangelism is about communicating the good news not as difference from the world rather difference for the world. We need to be the difference. We must show the world that the children of God are a blessing to all of creation and all people.
How are you going to be the difference that the “good news of Jesus Christ” brings? Will it be by comforting the discomforted? By freeing those held captive by societal pressures, the economy, or other forms of oppression? Maybe it will be through your friendship? However it will happen, remember what we are offering people is hope not fear!
Join us this Sunday, May 6th at 10:30 AM as we continue our Renovate series and discuss how our missional work is conversion of ourselves and others together.