6 March 2019

During the season of autumn, we make ‘E for Evangelism’ our area of extra focus in the ‘4E’ process of disciple-making. (Engaging the community; Evangelising the lost; Establishing believers in the faith; Equipping you for service.)

I was encouraged by those who engaged friends with our Walk for Water. (And how good to raise over $3000!). And there was a record number of children, including many guests, at Kids Kollide last week. And can you pray for the dozen people sitting round my dining room table on Tuesday nights looking at Simply Christianity. I want each one to see Jesus more clearly!

There are some very obvious opportunities for evangelism coming. Of course, there’s our Easter services. They offer an easier chance than usual to invite a friend to church. People from non-Christian cultures are often curious. Jon Baird is preaching a “Jesus is Why… We Live, We Laugh and We Love” series – both before Easter (in the morning) and after (evening congregations). This short series has been honed on campus and Jon will bring his characteristic clarity. And I hope many can engage with sexologist, Dr Patricia Weerakoon, in March as we think of navigating a sex-saturated culture.

Some of you have said you were kicking yourself for missing opportunities. A friend said they liked the look of the Walk for Water or the sound of Simply Christianity … but they only heard too late. Other times, it is just finding yourself unsure what to say when a ‘God’ topic comes up. (Sometimes it shouldn’t be a surprise: I was asked about Cardinal Pell this week! That needed some compassion and clarity.)

Well, here are 3 brief things to making the most of even a missed chance:

  1. Remember that God is in control. He can defend himself. And he can draw people to himself, regardless of our stuff ups! Let that help you relax.
  2. Do a post mortem and think about what you could’ve said, so you’re ready for the opportunity. I always seem much smarter 5 hours later, lying awake in bed. So maybe you can come up with a good response for the next time a similar thing comes up.
  3. Maybe you go back to the person, and say, “What you said, really touched me. I didn’t know what to say at the time, but it got me thinking. And this is what I came up with… I wonder if it might be helpful.” Or maybe you can say you were sorry you didn’t let them know about the last event, so you want to ask them if they are interested in whatever it is that’s coming up now. Just takes a little courage.

And also keep being an inviter to the other things you do: football, coffee, movies, restaurants, games nights, picnics and paddling. Colossians 4:5, Be wise in the way you act towards outsiders; make the most of every opportunity.”

Sandy Grant
Senior Minister