I used to be the biggest scaredy cat when it came to sharing the gospel with people. I remember crying in my dorm room reading 1 John 4:18, which says, “There is no fear in love; instead, perfect love drives out fear, because fear involves punishment. So the one who fears has not reached perfection in love.” I thought, “Welp, I must not be a Christian then because I am SO SCARED!!!” (In the emoji world, multiple of the waterfall tears faces.)
Obviously I was a Christian, just one that had a difficult stepping out in faith in the area of evangelism. Though it’s a lot easier than it used to be (I don’t shake as bad I used to), I still struggle to get the courage to start a conversation with others about Jesus or even what they believe spiritually. I don’t have all the best responses memorized. I don’t remember every scripture reference I use. I don’t want them to think that I’m one of those CRAZY Christians. I don’t want them to think that I’m part of a cult. I can think of every reason why I shouldn’t start a conversation!
But I keep coming back to these three truths: 1) Someone had to share with me so I could come into a relationship with Jesus 2) Jesus commands me to do it (Matthew 28:18-20) 3) The Holy Spirit living in me can give me everything I need to share, and teach me from mistakes (John 14:26).
Something our staff has gotten back to on our campus is walking around engaging with an easy question: We’re going around asking people spiritual question, may we ask you one?
For some reason, that freaked me out! Why would someone randomly come up and ask you that?! Then I realized, it is so wonderful! You engage and bring them directly to the point of why you want to talk to them. If THEY say no, that’s their decision. You stepped out in faith and left the results to God. If they say YES, then you can easily lead with a question that can directed to the gospel very easily. Here are a few suggestions (and some suggested follow up questions that lead to the gospel) that we have used:
* If you were to die tonight, and you appear before God and you had to tell Him why you should be let into heaven, what would you tell God? May I tell you what God requires to get into heaven?
* What do you put your hope in? May I share with you where I put hope?
* What is St. Patrick’s Day/Valentine’s Day about? If St. Patrick/St. Valentine were to be here, what do you think they would tell you?
* What is Christmas/Easter about? May I share with you what I think it’s about? May I share the point of why Jesus came and died?
* (This one is my favorite) Let’s say Jesus just appeared between you and I, and He had one thing He wanted to tell you, what would he say? May I share with you what I think He would tell you? (You can also send them to the link “What Does Jesus Want to Say to You?”)
There are tons of questions you can ask! Take the time to listen to what the person/people say, and respond to what they say. For example, when I ask that last question I often hear, “Just keep going.” Ask, “What do you mean by that?” Another one I’ve heard a lot is, “Go to church.” You can ask, “Do you have a church background?” or “Did you grow up going to church?” Basically, care about what they are saying – even if it sounds crazy to you. Their responses mean something to them, or they may be about to realize that they should care more about their spiritual life.
Also be prepared to share the gospel and testimony at any moment! Second Timothy 4:2 says, “Preach the word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage--with great patience and careful instruction.” Either have something memorized or have a track on you. I love using the Knowing God Personally booklet for SO many reasons, but the best ones is A) I don’t have to have anything memorized B) I can give it to them regardless of how much time I have with them.
For more good questions to ask, I suggest reading Reach: How to Use Your Social Media Influence for the Glory of God By Laura Krokos and Angi Pratt (Which you can buy in the MW store). They have a few pages I have reference a lot to ask really good questions – whether online or in person! I am a crummy reader, and I found this fun and easy to read, and very easy to apply! If I can read it you can too. (I was not told, influence or encouraged to promote MW stuff – I do because it’s actually worth while stuff that you can actually apply to your life.)
Leah works with Master Plan Ministries at Fort Lewis College in Durango, CO. Other than watching college students' lives change, she enjoys getting her mind blown by God and His Word, watching sci fi, baking cupcakes, and spending time with her hunky husband.