The communication team of the BGCT commissioned an intern to do man-on-the-street interviews last September. With video camera in hand, the intern asked random Texans “How do you experience hope on a daily basis?” If money were no object, I’d request they send one out to ask this question, “How do you experience Christians you know on a daily basis?” Wouldn’t it be great if their first response was “Hmmm … Christians? Can’t say it’s true for them all, but the ones I know are replete with integrity. That’s what distinguishes them – their integrity.” Or …
“Christians? The ones I’ve come across are ludicrously filled with compassion. They’re just plain kind to people!” Or …
“Christians? They unapologetically tell the truth … they shoot straight with you.”
“Christians? They have concern for the poor—no one cares for the poor like Christians do.”
“Christians? They’re humble people … they admit when they are wrong, seek forgiveness and forgive others.”
“Christians? They are genuinely open toward all kinds of people, regardless of their background, race, soceo-economic status. Man, Christians go out of the way to make you feel welcome!”
“Christians? Whenever somebody needs a little encouragement or friendship, Christians are the first to lend a hand.”
Or best of all, what if people said what the ruling council of Israel said of Peter and John, “Christians, they are ordinary people who have been with Jesus” (Acts 3:13).
Click below and listen to the man-on-the-street above-mentioned interview. Precisely two minutes and twenty four seconds (2:24) into the video listen, if you dare, to the lady respond to a question about hope and the church.
You didn’t watch it, did you? That’s ok! She said, “I never disliked myself more than when I was going to church.” She haunts me. She is legion.
We have a real problem in evangelism. But just what is it? I am often told the problem is using the word “evangelism.” Don’t use that word, we are told. Is that the problem with evangelism? Texas Baptists are vocal about evangelism, particularly in regards to best practices. Which is the best practice: prayer evangelism, small group evangelism, personal evangelism, event evangelism, relational evangelism, ministry evangelism, church starting evangelism? Are methods the problem? For myself, I like and support them all!
What is the problem with evangelism? When a newspaper posed the question, “What’s Wrong with the World?” thinker G. K. Chesterton reputedly wrote a brief letter in response: ‘Dear Sirs: I am. Sincerely Yours, G. K. Chesterton.” What is wrong with evangelism? I am.