The church we are involved with intentional reaching out to people who don’t know Christ. We love to help people our their journey to faith in Christ.
But, sometimes it gets awkward.
We have gotten use to how Christians should think, dress, speak, live and behave. Over the years, we get insulated with a new normal.
A jarring culture clash occurs when people that haven’t experienced the same sanctifying transformation begin to enter our clean little world.
People on their way to Jesus have not yet experienced that transformation.
Their journey can be a messy one.
- A new person on their journey to Jesus show up in your small group and use more “colorful language” than your group is used to?
- Talking with some visitors after the service and you discover their lifestyle choices make you feel uncomfortable?
- You are serving in your community and the new volunteer swears too much when he drops a hammer on his foot?
It happens in our church.
Kevin Harney, author of Organic Outreach for Ordinary People: Sharing Good News Naturally, writes in the November 2012 Outreach Magazine, where he shares four lessons about helping such people find faith in Christ:
Lesson 1: Don’t be shocked, taken back or offended when a nonbeliever acts like a nonbeliever. Just love and embrace them.
Lesson 2: Don’t be afraid to tell the truth, but do it with a loving, humble and gentle spirit.
Lesson 3: Salvation and sanctification are different things. When someone enters a life-giving relationship with Jesus, the sanctifying work of the Holy Spirit begins.
Lesson 4: We need to be ready for and embrace the messes new believers still can make, but sometimes they surprise us.
Let’s be thankful that the Lord draws people unto Himself.
We need to make sure our awkwardness and fears don’t close the door to their journey to faith.
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