Some of you have likely used evangelism surveys.
They are often positioned a evangelistic conversation starters or a good witnessing tool for your door to door campaigns or marketplace evangelism like a table at a state fair or flea market.
Some might start with questions about your religious background and if you consider yourself a religious person.
Other’s might start with questions related to the “Are you a Good Person” gospel script, or the traditional Evangelism Explosion Questions.
Evangelism Survey I Used Once
I had used an evangelism survey that asked something like (I can’t remember the real questions, but they flowed like this):
- “Where town are you from?”
- “Where do you work now?”
- “Are you happy with your job?”
- “Are you happy with life?”
- “Can I tell how about how to have abundant life?”
See the zinger that gets dropped like a hand grenade in the middle of innocent conversation?
I dutifully jotted answers as if I was collecting real data.
I was the obedient survey taker and shared the gospel at the end of the evangelism survey if they said yes.
I felt like I was witnessing, but feeling awful that I had no purpose for the evangelism survey other than to force open a conversational door.
Another Evangelism Survey Experience
For a seminary class assignment, I had to have a gospel conversation with someone at least once a week.
To fulfill this dreadful assignment (I was scared and nervous), I called up a co-worker and said
“I’m doing a class project. Can we meet in the cafeteria for coffee and allow me to ask you some questions?”
It’s true that I was doing a class project (for Evangelism 101), but the survey was bogus.
I had no purpose for the data, tossed the form when it was over, and walked away feeling like I had completed the assignment. Mission accomplished. Got the grade.
However I felt like I had told a white lie.
I wasn’t collecting data, the evangelism survey was simply a ploy to break the ice.
I was witnessing to the TRUTH of the gospel through a FALSE pretense.
I don’t use evangelism surveys anymore, because the ones I learned had no honesty to them in doing evangelism.
These are the evangelism surveys that aren’t really surveys, but simply innocent questions to force open the door to a spiritual conversation.
They often collect irrelevant data, but lead up to questions about the gospel and a person’s spiritual need.
What Evangelism Surveys could be useful?
I could see a church planting team using a survey to gather information that would shape the formation of the church.
Such survey’s would be part of community exegesis, and could easily open a conversation about the gospel of Jesus Christ.
The church planting team has a valid use for the data.
A Survey to Assess Spiritual Thirst
Update: I came across a tool by Gary Rohrmayer for training church planters, described at length in his book: Spiritual Conversations.
Gary introduces a tool to diagnose or assess a person’s spiritual thirst. It is a description of the spiritual journey to Christ in descriptive phrases
- Actively Seeking
With each one, he provides a description of them.
As you go through the descriptions with people, they will naturally find the one closest to where they would describe themselves.
Then he gives you 4 survey questions you can ask of the person
- Where are you now on your spiritual journey?
- Where would you like to be on your spiritual journey in six months to a year?
- What is standing between you and that point?
- What will it take for you to remove those barriers? Or, how can I help you take the next step?
With this simple survey, you can determine a person’s level of spiritual thirst, and it is a natural conversation tool to go deeper about the goals a person has for their spiritual life.
I’ve been using this tool and it’s wonderful. I even taught a church how to use this in their door to door campaign.
To me, this is an honest survey. The outcome for those who are spiritual thirsty is an invitation to their next step. For those who are not ready to grow spiritually, the church planter can move on.
To order your printed versions of the Your Journey Guide, visit http://www.YourJourneyResources.com
Order your copy of Spiritual Conversations from Amazon.
Do you use Evangelism Surveys?
If you have an honest evangelism survey, I’d like to see it.
If you think evangelism surveys are an acceptable pretense for a conversation, I encourage your comments here.