Wandering outside more these days? Stay-at-home orders and beautiful spring weather have given many people a chance to chitchat and meet neighbours from a safe distance.
With so much fear and negativity surrounding the COVID-19 outbreak, offering your neighbours some encouragement can be refreshing. Plus, with no televised sports or after-school activities, your cul-de-sac may contain a captive audience eager for good news.
Next time, when the conversation inevitably turns to the coronavirus, why not seize the opportunity to share your faith story? Every Christ-follower has one. It’s how you came to trust God as your Saviour and how He’s changed your life.
Try starting with something like this:
Neighbour: This staying home thing is getting old.
You: It’s hard for sure, and I’m sorry for the reason. But I’m trying to keep positive and stay grateful. God has blessed me — I wasn’t always like this. I used to be …
Then, take a couple minutes and tell them about the old you and why you’ve changed.
You don’t need to have an amazing testimony. What makes it meaningful to someone is that you’re taking the time to open up to them and share something personal.
Still thinking, “Not me. I don’t feel comfortable talking about my faith?”
As Christ-followers, it’s really not about us. It’s about loving our neighbours the way God loves us. In Matthew 28:19, Jesus said, “Go and make disciples of all nations.”
And, God commanded we tell others how to find peace and purpose in Him.
Billy Graham said to never pass up an opportunity to tell others about Christ’s love: “We are stewards of the Gospel. The power to proclaim the greatest news in heaven and earth was not given to the angels; it was given to redeemed men. Every Christian is to be a witness.”
Afraid you won’t have the right words? In Luke 12:12, Jesus promised that the Holy Spirit will tell us what to say in that moment.
Remember, you don’t have to worry about convincing someone they need God. In fact, you can’t. That’s up to His Holy Spirit to open their heart to the Good News and convict them of their pride. All you need to do is tell them about God’s work on the cross that saved us.
This can include sharing these telling words from Billy Graham: “There must be a decision for Christ — here and now — in this life.” Make it clear there’s no “grey area” in this matter, it’s black and white. No decision for Christ is a decision.
Invite them to watch your church service online. When your church re-opens after the COVID-19 outbreak, follow up with a personal invitation to come with you.
And don’t forget to pray for your neighbours. Ask God to open their heart to some good news.
But most of all, don’t waste this window of opportunity to share the reason for our hope.
Share these helpful resources with your neighbours.