What’s Love Got To Do With It?

“I always thought Christians were all about love, but I never saw it personally shown to me until I met you.” I stood there scrambling for the right response while trying to hold back the tears. Tears coming from a heart that was breaking. How is that possible? Surely, before now, someone had displayed Christian love towards this middle-aged friend of mine.

I gathered my thoughts and said, “I’m sorry it took this long for you to see how Christians should love people. I know I fail often in showing others the love God has shown me.”

It wasn’t just an act of kindness that moved my friend to share her thoughts. Those are easy. She realized I cared for her enough to build a relationship where my faith was in view of her to witness. Our friendship allowed both our families to benefit from the bond of homeschooling our kids.

The Mission of God

Missio Dei is Latin for the “mission of God.” It is God’s own sending of the Son, to redeem us from our sin through the cross and resurrection. But it is also God now sending us forth, our calling to mission to follow Christ. When we respond to God in faith and obedience, we experience fellowship by grace with the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Through salvation and our grounding in the Trinity, we continue the activity of our mission to follow Christ into the world we live. Evangelism is a large part of that mission.

“Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age” (Matthew 28:19-20).

I’ve read comments that some believe only the apostles received this command. I shudder to think of the consequences to the spread of the gospel if that were true! The empowerment of the Holy Spirit poured out to all who believed at Pentecost should put that idea to rest. No, like it or not, we all have the responsibility to “go and make disciples.” 

Why Don’t We Take Part in Evangelism?

The question we must be truthful about is: Do we really desire to help the non-believer in their journey to Christ? 

If so, then why do Christians seldom take part in the “mission of God”? I sat at a table with a group of women years ago and discussed this same question. Here are some reasons I heard then, along with a few others.

  1. The fear of not knowing what to say. Feeling inadequately prepared.
  2. Then there’s the fear of being rejected, not liked. That’s certainly a possibility, perhaps even more today as Christians become more and more polarized in our society.
  3. I don’t have the gift of evangelism. Evidently, few possess this gift, or our churches would be full. Or perhaps many have the gift and simply aren’t using it. Discovering your spiritual gifting remains important for your life and the health and growth of the church.
  4. I’m the number on the Enneagram that defines me as shy. Too shy to share the good news of Christ. I’ll leave that for the extroverts.
  5. Apathy. Unfortunately, many just don’t care. They have their ticket to heaven—or maybe not—and believe others will either get their own or miss out.
  6. Then there is the one seldom spoken out loud, but the most honest. I don’t have the time; I’m too busy living my life, focused on my journey. That’s the excuse most of us can say ouch to!

All sound like realistic reasons. Well, maybe not number four.

What Really Hinders Us From Sharing Our Faith?

I added my own thoughts at that table of ladies. My premise—we don’t love others enough!

Think about it. Would you ever consider not sharing the gospel with your children? What about a close friend? Absolutely not! Why? Because you love them! Your heart would break to see them eternally separated from God. Love becomes a huge motivator for sharing God’s truth. Just like Christ’s love for us that led him to the cross.

Added to loving others more, evangelism and discipleship require a relationship. Though an obvious statement, we forget that love grows out of a relationship with someone. I need a relationship with my kids, friends, relatives, and neighbors before I care enough to share the gospel with them. The dam blocking us from the spread of the gospel has become we aren’t willing to build genuine, loving connections and relationships with others.

That’s what my non-Christian homeschool friend was looking for from her Christian friend. Love and relationship!

So, ask yourself. Who are your yet to know the Savior friends? What level of connection have you made with them? Jesus chose 12 men and a few women to invest in. Who might you invest in?


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