Archive for the ‘Let’s Go’ Category

The Christian “Bubble”

August 30, 2013

Hey everyone,

I thought I’d kick-off my return to T4E with a post that means a lot to me personally. I know I’m not the only one who struggles with it though, so hopefully someone finds this helpful.

Many of us have heard the term “the Christian bubble.” Sometimes it’s used more specifically to refer to our churches, Christian schools, primarily Christian neighborhoods, etc. Basically, it means a sphere of friends or a place of interaction that is pretty isolated from the secular world.

I am a student at a small-ish Christian college called Cedarville University that is 20 minutes away from the nearest civilization. I definitely live in what we here like to call the “Cedarville bubble.” I don’t interact with unbelievers on anything close to a regular basis. Sure, it’s great to be surrounded by fellow believers with whom I can worship daily. But how am I supposed to be a light for Christ in this place full of other lights?

This is a question that many have struggled with–especially those whose normal interaction is limited to (Christian) school/church friends. I too have struggled to find out what God would have me do during my time in the Cedarville bubble.

Just a note: I don’t intend any of the following thoughts to make anyone feel guilty. I’m simply saying what I’ve learned from my (admittedly limited) experience and what I feel God is laying on my heart.

The Great Commission never goes away, despite our circumstances. This might seem obvious, but if you think about it, many of us tend to use our bubbles as an excuse not to evangelize. I’ve been guilty of this time and time again. I’ve thought many time, “Well, I really don’t interact with non-Christians on a daily basis. I’m sure God will bring some into my life eventually. For now I’ll just prepare myself for that.” This, however, is entirely the wrong attitude to have. God wants us to be always fulfilling the Great Commission! We don’t get a break because of our life situation! So we need to find out the best way to live out God’s command from within the bubble–or find a way to get out of the bubble altogether.

I don’t want to leave you on that note, so I do have a few ideas on how we can make this work. First of all, we all know at least one person who does not have a saving relationship with Jesus Christ. It might be someone whom you recognize as being only a nominal Christian. Jesus tells us that we will know people by their fruit, so, while we cannot judge a person’s heart, it is often quite apparent when someone is only pretending to be a Christian. However, it is more than likely that you also know at least one person who doesn’t even claim the name of Jesus. Think about it for a bit. I’m sure someone will come to mind. Even if you don’t spend much time with them, they need Jesus too, and you do have a connection to that person.

Secondly, you are not trapped in whatever bubble you inhabit. For example, while I live at Cedarville, I can leave campus. I have a car. I have friends with cars. There are a bunch of different ministries with vans. You all may not have quite that level of opportunity available to you, but I’m sure you have at least one. Don’t wait for God to bring unbelievers to you. Sometimes He does, and it’s awesome, but most of the time we have our own responsibility in the matter. Be intentional about finding opportunities to get to know non-Christians! Talk to people in your neighborhood. Find a ministry you can join. Trust me, there is a way in pretty much any bubble to find a way to get out.

Lastly, though it may have sounded like I was deriding “preparation” as an excuse for inaction before, that’s now what I intended. The fact is, we always need to be preparing. We need to preach the gospel to ourselves so that we become changed by it. We need to be praying for God’s strength. We need to be fellowshipping with other Christians who can pour into our lives and build us up. Opportunities sometimes take time to find. Prepare yourself to

I hope this is an encouragement to someone. Just remember, God always provides a way to accomplish his work!

To God be the glory forever and ever!
.:Matt:.

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Lifestyle Evangelism

May 31, 2010

We’ve talked about Street Evangelism and we’ve talked about Friendship Evangelism. However,  while both of these are important, we can’t forget Lifestyle Evangelism. This is perhaps the most important kind of evangelism, especially if you plan on using Friendship Evangelism on a regular basis.

When witnessing to our friends, we have more credibility if we’re actually walking out our faith. Why would our friends want to even consider our religion if it hasn’t changed us? We want to be a Christian not only in name, but in action.

In order to do this we should take 1st Corinthians 10:31 literally, “So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.” We need to make sure we are living a life that pleases God in every aspect. In the way we respect our parents, the way we treat our siblings, in our choice of friends, these should please God. So should the way we talk, our actions, our words, our attitudes, everything. We should be living a lifestyle that makes people stop and wonder why we’re different.

Good luck,

Eden

Passion Fuel

May 28, 2010

Hey everyone!

When you read the title of this post, you probably wondered what “passion fuel” is. Passion fuel is what drives you to share the gospel. It’s your reason for evangelism. Different people have different motivations for witnessing. In his book Dare to Share: A Field Guide to Sharing Your Faith Greg Stier lists three reasons to share your faith:

1. God told you to! (this is my personal motivation).

Obviously, if God tells you to do something, you need to do it. And Jesus (who is, of course, God) told us in Matthew 28:18-20, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” If Jesus told you to do make disciples of all nations, including the one you live in, you’d better do it.

2. People need Jesus now!

Everyone is born into this world with a Jesus-shaped hole in their lives. They try to fill it with temporary things, but in the end only Jesus can fill it. Without Jesus, people’s lives will remain unfulfilled. Jesus said in John 10:10, “I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” He didn’t just mean in heaven some time in the future. He means now! We as Christians have experienced this. As Johnny Diaz said , “How selfish am I if I don’t go tell the world?”

3. People need Jesus later!

We all know what happens if you die without Jesus. The only way to avoid eternal death is to accept Jesus as Lord and Savior. Hell is a real place where the worst of the punishment is complete separation from God, not to mention the lake of fire that only burns and does not consume. Do you really want your friends to end up there? Of course not! I wouldn’t wish that on my worst enemy! So why don’t we warn people?

So now you have three great reasons to tell people about Jesus. Now you just need to pick one and go for it!

In Christ,

.:Matt:.

I Have A Confession

May 27, 2010

Today I’d like to make a confession.

I used to witness.

That’s right. I used to.

I would go out and hand out tracks just about every day. This went on for some time. God blessed my spirit with joy and I was content with life and myself. For some strange reason, I stopped. Oh, it’s been a few years since that period of my life. I’ve started ad stopped again here and there: I’ve even led a few people to the Lord since then. But I’ve not been able to say, with Paul, “This one thing I do…”.

I regret falling out of a good habit. But God has been merciful, even when I’ve flat out told him, “NO!”. I joined this blog hoping to be a blessing to others. And I sincerely hope that I am.

But I have another agenda.

Perhaps, writing here about witnessing, I’ll actually have to witness! What hypocrite would write about evangelism and then not go out and do it, right?

The only problem is, I’m a wimp. I mean, who actually has the guts to go out and tell completely random strangers about Jesus? That’s got to be the most offensive name of the Age. People look down at their feet and awkwardly kick the dust when you bring up that name. People will do that little breathing-out-their-nose thing and shake their heads when you mention Him. They’ll roll their eyes and look at you like some sort of idiot when you talk about the Lord.

Be not afraid of their faces: for I am with thee to deliver thee, saith the LORD.

Oh, yeah… The book of Jeremiah says we shouldn’t fear man’s face: that we shouldn’t be afraid of rejection. After all, they’re not really rejecting us, are they? They’re really rejecting Christ. That’s what He says.

So, there: I said it. I need to be a witness for Christ more than I am now. I hope you’ll help me with this.

Anthony

Witness While You Can

May 24, 2010

I’ve often read or heard that we need to witness now, because we don’t know when Jesus will return. Much can, and has, been said on the topic, and it is true; our time on earth is short. This is often tied to Matthew 24:42:

“Watch therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come.”

Watch therefore could be changed to any other word. For example, you could put, “Praise the Lord: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come”, or specifically, “Share the Gospel: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come”. These are all true statements.

However, this post is about another topic entirely, but the title still remains: Witness While You Can. Last summer God blessed me with the passion and opportunity to go witnessing many times. This was largely because of one thing: good weather. The days were long, sunny and bright. Once autumn hit, however, the days grew short, the leaves fell, and it became much colder outside. It soon turned difficult to walk to my local mall, or anywhere else for that matter.
All winter long I yearned for the time and opportunity to go witnessing. It, however, was very discouraging to do in Michigan’s harsh and snowy weather. Now that spring, and soon summer, has come around, I’m far more able to find people who need the Good News. The question is, will I seize the chance to do so, or will I let other things creep in its place? With most schools letting out and the nice weather ahead, what will you do with the season? Make it count, because the time is short – both for the current year, and for eternity.

God bless,
J.J. Biddinger

Start of Evangelism series

April 15, 2009

Hey all! I’ve been given the privilege of starting off the evangelism series.

So, I’ve decided to start off with what I like to call love evangelism. This is a really big subject, but I feel like God has been laying this on my heart more and more.  I have been evangelizing to my friends for a while now, but it’s only recently that I’ve started thinking about using this style of evangelism.

I think you have to start with understanding that every person you meet is just that, a person. And what’s more, if they’re hurting they don’t want you to throw a bible at them. They want you to understand them.  And if you think about it, that’s what Jesus did. He didn’t go around telling people to repent and turn to Him, he loved them and made friends.

I believe that if you live for you life for Christ, and spend more time loving people than you do preaching at them, they will notice a difference, and want to know why you are different.  I’m not saying that you should never bring up the gospel, I’m simply saying that it might be better to start a relationship first.

This brings me to another point, when you do get into a “religious” discussion, you have to be careful not to bash the person or their beliefs. Nobody wants to be yelled at, and nobody really wants to be told they’re wrong. I had the best results when I took this approach. Instead of attacking my friend and his religion, I listened to what he believed and then showed him what I believe. This particular person believes in the Bible so, I showed him what he said, and what the Bible said. While I didn’t actually bring him to Christ, I believe God helped me to plant seeds.

I hope this has caused you to think about your approach to evangelism.

In Christ,

History Maker

Today

February 13, 2009

Levi says,

God doesn’t need you a year from now. God needs you NOW! We serve a
“right-now” God. The truth is that He doesn’t even need you; you need
Him. But he wants to use you right now. Are you furthering His
kingdom? Are you accomplishing what He asked you to do? If not, then
ask Him to. He wants every believer to bring souls to heaven. In Mark
16:15 Jesus tells us, “Go ye into all the world, and preach the
Gospel to every creature.” “Go” means “do not stay.” It means stop
reading this blog, get up, and go bring the good news to every person
you find in our lost and dying world.
Every single day, 150,000 people die and enter eternity. We have a
project.  John Wesley wrote, “You have nothing to do but to save
souls. Therefore spend and be spent in this work.” And in Proverbs
11:30, Solomon, the wisest man in the world said, “he that winneth
souls is wise.”  Soul winners are wise people. The Bible instructs us
to gain wisdom and God promises to give wisdom to reach the lost for
him. Be wise!

Inspirations from One Thing you Can’t do in Heaven.

Winning!

January 8, 2009

(Levi)

When someone witnesses to an unsaved person what responses can the unsaved person have? I would say that there are three. The unsaved person can either Accept, have a Seed Planted, or Reject the truth. Now it is easy to see that when someone Accepts the gospel it is a very good thing. Also, if a Seed is Planted in someone’s life it is good. But, remorsefully, when someone Rejects Jesus it is a bad thing. When someone Rejects God’s holy love it is a disgraceful sin.So basically you can see that when you share the gospel with someone you have a sixty-six percent of it being a winning situation! Sixty-six percent is quite a big bonus. If you had 66% chance of winning a bunch of money or shooting a basket ball in the hoop you’d take it.win-win-lose5

Now we’ll look at some verses, Luke 6:22 “Blessed are you when men hate you, when they exclude you and insult you and reject your name as evil, because of the Son of Man. 23 Rejoice in that day and leap for joy, because great is your reward in heaven. For that is how their fathers treated the prophets.” and 1Peter 4:13 “But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ’s sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy.” From those verses we can see that even if someone Rejects what you tell them it is still a good situation.win-win-win4

When you witness it will always be a winning situation! When you speak God’s word to people it will always be good. Even if someone Rejects what you are saying it is a winning situation. Accept, Plant Seed, Reject…Win, Win, Win! So go for it! Give your friend a high-five and praise God the next time someone Rejects the gospel . Because “your reward is great in heaven.”

Incites from One Thing You Can’t Do In Heaven.

Incentives to Soul-winning

November 27, 2008

A good question to ask is, “why should we evangelize?”. There are several reasons, a few of which we will examine here. They all come right from the Bible. So, why should we share our faith with others? Here are three reasons, which have to with our love to God, our love for others, and our (let’s face it) love for ourselves.

  1. Because God says to. (Loving God)

This one is pretty obvious. “Go ye into all the world, and preach the Gospel unto every creature…”     (Mark 16:15) But the fact that God tells us to share our faith should encourage us to do it! Here is one reason why: Where God commands, He empowers. “If ye love me, keep my commandments.” (John 14:15) This is all a part of keeping that one great commandment, “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God…”.

2.  Because Hell is a real place. (Loving our neighbors)

“And in hell he lifted up his eyes, being in torments…” (Luke 16:23) We need to tell other people about Jesus because Hell is a real place. Do you want to go to Hell? I think not. At least I know that I do not want to go to a place called Hell. Do you want to go to a real place called Heaven? You will if you are saved by Christ and understand what Heaven really means: what Heaven really is. And it is not just a place where we sit on clouds and play harps forever. I really think that Heaven will be the most fun place in the universe. So, I know that I want to go there.

If we want these things for ourselves, we ought to want them for others. The Lord says, “Love thy neighbor as thyself” (Matthew 22:39) This means that the good we desire for ourselves we should desire for others, too.

3. Because there are great rewards. (Toward self)

“He that goeth forth and weepeth, bearing precious seed, shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him.” (Psalm 126:6). The precious seed, says the Lord “is the word of God”      (Luke 8:11). God “renderest to every man according to his work” (Psalm 62:12). This means that because God is just (and there are many verses that say so!), he will give all of us what we deserve. He will not give us according to the results, but according to the effort. What do we get for this effort? Jesus said, “lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where theives do not break through nor steal”. These treasures are eternal.

So, as you can see there are quite a few reasons for us Christians to be out there witnessing. My challenge for us all this week is to gain a burden for the lost. Ask God to help you go and weep for the lost, seeking their souls for Christ. That is one step on the Greatest Adventure.

God bless!

~ Anthony H.