Every Sunday, Mark would ask how you were you were doing, quickly followed by “What is the Lord doing in your life?” I went to church with Mark for 18 years and I can’t remember having a conversation about the Cowboys or the Spurs. Mark had 7 children, all of them athletic, so the opportunity to talk sports should have been there. However, spiritual conversations were plentiful.
I asked Mark about his motivation to ask this question. I pointed out that his question was different than other fellas and sometimes it was a hard conversation to have. I had even seen people walk in the opposite direction, so they wouldn’t have that conversation with him. Mark responded with two reasons. First, Sunday morning was the only time he would see most of his church family and he didn’t want to miss the opportunity. Second, he might be the only person having that conversation with them.
Which brings us to Thanksgiving and the holiday season. Often this is a time (maybe the only time) that we get together with family and friends. We reconnect over the kids and their schedules, work, vacations, news, and everything other than our spiritual lives. Maybe they have responded poorly in the past, or they don’t share your views, or maybe … whatever. It is hard. It is hard for all of us.
"Let this season be your opening to witness to family and friends. Be thankful for the opportunity to share your Savior."
Using Mark’s logic, this season is a great opportunity and we may be the only ones to broach the subject. How do we do this; what can make it doable?
- Pray for guidance: About who to speak with and when to do it.
- Consider what you might say: It might work for you to ask Mark’s question. Or you could share how the Lord is working in your life or share your testimony. Or share a question you have about theology or something happening in the public sector.
- Start the conversation with another person: Make sure your original target in close proximity. Start with a side conversation, eventually involving the person you want.
- Don’t be afraid to not know the answer: If something comes up, say “I don’t know, but I will do some research and get back to you”. This gives you an automatic reason to follow up.
- Pray and follow up: Could be a simple as a message “I enjoyed talking with you about ______” or if you see them at Christmas, having another conversation.
Today, I read a letter from President Reagan while he was in office. He took time out of his busy day running the country to share the gospel with his Father-in-law. It was that important for him and that important for us.
I saw Mark about a year ago. He gave me a hug, and asked, “What is the Lord doing in your life?” Some things never change, and some things do. Let this season be your opening to witness to your family and friends. Be thankful for the opportunity to share your Savior.
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