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Starting the Conversation – Introducing the Spiritually Indifferent to Christian Ideas
Posted by Clare
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I get asked this question a lot: How do you evangelize? Meaning, how do you start conversations with non-Christians that will hopefully lead to spiritual things?”

Carefully and thoughtfully is my short answer. Christians have a bad reputation of dumping the whole truckload on total strangers or new friends in “Christianese,” language that we understand but means something different to others. Therefore, the first thing I need to say is – go slow. Build a relationship with people. Be transparent. Share your failures. Talk about the people you value. Build trust. Show them that you’re a different kind of Christian than they expect.

Once you’ve built a relationship, I’d intentionally think about making some pre-decisions about a series of statements or questions you could use to engage the spiritually indifferent in faith conversations. Here are a few that others and I have used; (more…)

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Suspicious of God
Posted by Clare
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“I believe God will meet all my needs. But, I’m not sure he’ll meet all my needs. That’s my fear.”

My wife, Susan, and I recently attended a weekend retreat sponsored by Generous Giving, a ministry that encourages thoughtful, biblical generosity. So, here we were sitting around a huge stone fireplace in a Christian camp lodge, with seven Christian couples, most of whom were strangers, talking about stewardship.

My first observation is that it’s often easier to talk to strangers about this topic than our friends. With strangers, we can read what the Bible says and nod our heads in agreement – safe, knowing full well, they don’t have a clue as to how we really live – what we’re really like. 

But, thanks to our moderator, the minute that statement made at the beginning of this blog was thrown out, everyone nodded silently. We had found common ground! There are people who truly lack food and shelter, the basic needs of life, but not this group! All our needs have been met. But, in that statement we immediately recognized that our hearts have slowly morphed so that many of our “wants” have now become our “needs”!

Why is that? Why have we let our wants so shape our happiness? I John 2:15-16 lays it out. “Do not love the world or anything in the world.If anyone loves the world, love for the Father is not in them. For everything in the world – the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life – comes not from the Father but from the world.” I John 2:15-16

John knew what we all know; most of us are content with what we have, until we see something nicer. Then mysteriously, what we have, instantly feels dated and second rate.

Here’s a truth you can take to the bank; “You can’t become content by getting what you want, you’ll just want more.” Discontentment is an addiction than can only be broken, like other addictions, by an intentional effort to understand the problem, and asking the Holy Spirit for the will to stop! (more…)

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