Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Advice, please!

I would love your input. Here are some questions I have been pondering over. I know that God is infinitely wise, and that Jesus was the fullness of God in human flesh. So when he was talking to people, he was doing it with full knowledge of how people respond to certain ways of speaking, and he always spoke truth. Many peoples' lives were changed when they met him. Others wanted to kill him. I want to study more how Jesus acted and spoke, so that I can emulate him in my relationships with others. These are some things my friend Tiffany and I were speaking about after Bible study tonight, as we discussed how frustrating it can be to try to lead others to know God. If you have any advice or wisdom, throw it out there! Thanks!

How did Jesus relate to people?

In what ways can I be more like Christ when trying to form relationships with others?

How do we talk to people about God without making them uncomfortable and guilty?

What has worked for you? What has God showed you that has made it easier for you to reach people?


Chel's Leaving a Legacy said...

I think that since we most certainly are NOT Jesus, then when I talk to people who don't know God, I try to be as transparent as possible.

Many well-meaning believers think that if they appear to be sinless, then they are more credible, but it seems to me that people want us to be authentic. Sure, there are those who are mistaken enough to think that we are supposed to be "perfect" or we're hypocrites, but then that's a great time to explain how needy we all are of God's grace, and how faithful He is to supply it.

Of course, there is a delicate balance between being transparent, and laying out our "dirty laundry." And we should be careful to not make them think, "Oh, well, if she can do that, then so can I."

So a good dose of both transparency and repentance along with some consistency all go a long way. :-)

How's that for a short answer??? lol

Edie said...

Chel's answer was great. :)

We are doing a study in my SS class called Walk Across the Room and this is the exact purpose of the study. There is a video, book, and study guide if you want to look into it.

Basically it's more about developing the relationship than making people a *project*. When we develop relationships with people then there are opportunities to discuss our own faith and let the Holy Spirit work in out in their hearts. People watch us and begin to see the difference in us. It's a process and it doesn't happen overnight.

Lighthouse Prayer Line said...

Hi Angela,

Great thought-provoking post! I think we can be more gentle with others and simply ask questions rather than just condemning others. Jesus asks many questions that He already knew the answer to...

If you have the opportunity, please say a prayer for the requests on our main page.

God bless you & your family,

Mark & Lynn Seay

ps - please consider following our blog &/or linking to us by grabbing one of our free blue buttons (top sidebar). :)

Kathy S. said...

Hi Angela, this is fun to ponder...Here are a few of my thoughts...Jesus never pushed, he was always "at ease" trusting His Father to lead him to the next "appointment", and I believe he was attentive to the voice of God every moment. Praying always.

Jesus told alot of stories that tugged at people's heart strings, and his love and concern for people was genuine.

I suppose the most noteworthy for me is that he was living in constant dependence on God, never doubting or getting discouraged~which is my natural tendency :( He entrusted the results to the Lord.

Penn Tomassetti said...

Hey Angela,

I think you brought up a really good topic to study - how did Jesus witness to people? You know, I've read the 4 gospels lots of times, and much of the time Jesus was either teaching his followers or else arguing with the Pharisees in the narratives, while he was also doing many miracles (but they weren't his main focus). As you read them over and over, you begin to see how Jesus was preparing His own death and also His apostles for the mission he would send them on before ascending back to heaven, and how he told them they would be his witnesses (by waiting for the promise of the Holy Spirit in Luke 24 and Acts 1).

Jesus always told his disciples that his main purpose was to give his life for his sheep by dying for them then rising again after 3 days (Jn 10 and etc.). However, He gave believers the task of evangelizing the whole world, since Jesus never traveled outside of Palestine. It was the apostles that he sent to the rest of the world, and they preached and taught others. So it would be really good for us to look at how they witnessed to people also. But it wasn't just the apostles and teachers, even the "lay people" witnessed to others when they were scattered because of persecution.

Another important thing to note while reading the gospels is how often Jesus was teaching and preaching, and what He was teaching and preaching. We don't have every word recorded that he ever spoke, but we do have the main things written down for us. The first words Jesus preached to people seem to have been these: "Repent and believe the gospel (good news), for the kingdom of God is at hand." And he told his disciples to go to the world preaching and teaching repentance and forgiveness of sin (Mark 1 and Luke 24).

Then you read Acts, and you first see Peter doing exactly what Jesus commanded, and how they witnessed with the power of the Holy Spirit upon them.

You know, we sometimes think that if we have the right method, or the right attitude, or the right words, that we can convince people to believe, but what we really need is to do what Jesus said and trust that the Holy Spirit will open the hearts and minds of unbelievers (2 Cor. 4:6).

Hope some of this helps, there is lots more to learn. You are welcome to visit my podbean blog for examples of times I've witnessed to people. God bless!


DidiLyn said...

Rather than making people a "project", which is easy to do because, goshdarnit, we just want them, no need them so badly to believe in Christ, I would just say,be yourself and love them.

Fill your tank up by studying and persuing the Lord hard. Then just love people. The spirit will overflow from your heart and they will see Jesus in you, and they will want to know more.