When did we stop being “fishers of men” and start being “ropers of men (like in the rodeo)? In considering this offer by Christ to the first disciples, I began to think about Christ’s “witnessing” style. He never did the same thing twice. He didn’t have a formula, and more importantly, He didn’t teach His disciples one. He loved on people. He didn’t give His testimony. He didn’t hand them a sheet of paper. He didn’t have a clever rubric to spit out. He met their needs as He saw fit.
Think about calf roping in rodeos. It requires years of practice, alot of skill, luck, and it’s exhausting. You’re chasing something that doesn’t want to be caught. Shotgun evangelism reminds me of that. The goal is to get you to say a prayer and then you’re done. I think the definition of evangelism as uber-aggressive pursuit of “pagans” leads to the fear of the e-word that most Christians have. Why should we be nervous about talking to people about Jesus? Why do we have to set aside “evangelism” time? Is that following the example of Christ?
Think about fishing. It really requires no preparation, no practice, no skill…just patience (and the desire cause it’s booooring). There’s nothing you can do to make the fish take the bait. It has to do it of it’s own accord. The bait has to be good enough. And the Bait is good enough, believe me. Jesus let people know who He was and they followed Him because they wanted to, not because they were pressured to. If we simply let Jesus dwell in us (thus others can see Him through us), then there’s no need to be nervous about sharing the gospel. You’re living it. Meet someone’s need (physical and emotional and psychological) and see how effective that is in comparison to asking them if they’re going to hell or not. Also, think about what you do after you caught the fish. There are more steps than just catching it. Jesus instructed us to make disciples, not just converts. I think we need to chill out.
This is all in line with what God has been teaching me lately…
We don’t need a church building. We don’t need fancy clothes. We don’t need an evangelism “how to” book. We don’t need “x” minutes of quiet time/day. We don’t need programming. We don’t need eight Bibles studies a week. We simply don’t need it.
We can follow God in our daily lives. It doesn’t need all the pomp and circumstance that goes with becoming a Christian. God wants us to pray when we’re making a sandwich and pray for someone while we’re walking to class. He wants us to love on people that we know. Faith doesn’t have to be such a big stinkin’ deal. Just live it daily and everything else will fall into place.
For now, that is all.