On this episode we’re joined with by Shaila Visser from Alpha Canada to discuss evangelism and the great commission. Shaila is extremely passionate about evangelism and the church. Her heart is to see the church engage in a deeper way in the great commission.
As we continue to navigate a period where our entire world has been turned upside down, Alpha Canada’s research, in partnership with the Flourishing Congregations Institute at Ambrose University, offers an important pulse check on Canadian Christian leaders. Some of these important findings included:
- Only 48% of Church leaders believe that evangelism is central to their church’s approach to discipleship.
- Most who come to the Christian faith do so as children, teens, or young adults, though 46-48% of those who work with youth, children, or families in congregations/parishes agreed or strongly agreed that it is wrong to share Christian beliefs with someone of a different (non)religion in hopes that they will one day identify as Christian.
- On the positive side, the more of a priority a congregation reportedly gives to evangelization, the more likely respondents and their congregations are to adopt beliefs or practices that are more evangelistic in scope.
The Gap in the Christian Worldview
Based on this research there are clearly some gaps in the Christian worldview when it comes to evangelism. Canadian Christians are looking toward their leaders for guidance. People’s perception that they are in control of their lives has been shaken, and many are potentially more open to spiritual conversations.
As more people are asking significant questions on life and purpose, it’s important that we’re there to meet our neighbors where they are.
“Evangelism is joining a conversation the Holy Spirit is already having with another person.” – Darrell Johnson
When we share our faith, we are not working alone. The Holy Spirit was there before our conversation, during it and stays behind when we leave. That is why prayer and evangelism are so interconnected.
“After this the Lord appointed seventy-two others and sent them two by two ahead of him to every town and place where he was about to go. He told them, “The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field. Go! I am sending you out like lambs among wolves.” Luke 10:1-3
What Can You Do?
Shaila has a practical three step process every Christian can do starting today:
- When you wake up everyday, pray “Holy Spirit use me today and let me join you in what you are doing”.
- Get to know your neighbors, by asking questions. Your neighbors might be on your street, co-workers, parents at your kid’s activities.
- When you find points of pain, step out in faith and ask if you can pray for them now.
You don’t have to have all the answers. In fact, it might be best to not attempt to answer all their questions. As you meet your neighbor where they’re at, allow the Holy Spirit to continue the work in their lives.