6/3/12 Michael, Alfredo, both about 25
"Follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ." 1 Cor. 11:1 We Christians often see evangelism and discipleship as two separate things. But I believe they are, in fact, inseparable. When we are involved in reaching out to the world with the Gospel, we are also setting an example for what it means to be a disciple of Christ, whether it is to other Christians we bring with us, Christians who happen to walk by and see our evangelism in action, or even to the unsaved themselves who could come to faith and one day think back on the example we set that helped introduce them to Jesus. Today I reached out to a young man named Michael while he was fishing at the park. He told me his hope for heaven is in Jesus who paid the penalty for his sins on the cross. We talked a while and I asked "Do you share your faith with others very often? He shook his head. "No, I don't get out very much." "You'd be surprised how easy it is to talk with unbelievers about our faith in Jesus. I think as Christians we don't give them enough credit - they are often very willing to talk about the Lord as long as we are willing to listen to their beliefs as well." I then went on to talk to Alfredo, a young man who was also fishing about 20 feet away from Michael. Michael saw how I opened the conversation, how I asked about Alfredo's beliefs and found out he has drifted away from the Catholic faith he was raised in and lately has been checking out Islam, and how I shared the Gospel by first presenting the law to show him his need for Christ. While I do think discipling others usually needs to be more intentional than this, we shouldn't underestimate the value of setting a good example of just what it is disciples of Jesus are to do.