Tuesday, 17 February 2009

Is our witness "Genuine"

A comment from Jon on this post got me thinking.
Personally I think the real issue is genuineness. E.g. 'Let's do a a pub quiz' - I'm there, whether it's in a church or not. But it has to be a quiz, not a covert operation to get me in church.

One reason 'men's ministry' struggles is because men are naturally suspicious...
I discussed this subject late last year but am moved to do so again.

I really, really dislike the "Come to an A,B,C,D whatever event on Saturday" and then in the small print * with a short talk about Jesus.

I remember vividly talking to a friend who had been invited by his Christian Union to a "Pancake party, with a short talk about Jesus". His point was simple:
"look, I like pancakes, and quite like the idea of a pancake party. I might be interested in a short talk about Jesus. But I am not interested in coming to one thing and getting another. Why can't they just be honest with me?"
I think this is where resources like Laurence Singlehurst's masterpiece "Sowing, Reaping, Keeping" really come to the fore. When we are talking about Jesus, let's invite people to hear. When we are having a pancake party, let's invite people to eat.

The "We are putting on this event to get you in a room so we can talk at you for the ten minutes at the end" way of doing witness is more akin to flogging Spanish timeshare holidays at a Cheese and wine evening or tours of Turkish carpet factories where they give you free shots of Raki.

I don't "just" want to do social events and never have the opportunity to explain the good news. Nor do I want to drive the articulated lorry of the gospel of over a small footbridge of a friendship too soon. Not without permission.

I do think our friends deserve the right to be informed of what they are coming to exactly, and then it is up to them to decide.

If our faith in genuine, then our witness certainly should be.


DaveW said...

I agree with you!

Mark Heath said...

good post Dave, spot on

Jongudmund said...

hey I got a mention. score. my life has meaning.