Firemen are awesome first-responders. They run toward the action. And when they arrive they know what to do and how to do it. Here are five evangelism ideas to spark your thinking as God’s Fire Investigator. 1. Where did the fire start? A home across the street from me once burned because a garage had faulty wiring. You can’t always look at someone and know the wiring in their heart. Engage them in conversations that are caring and genuine. The lost today hesitate to come to a … [Read more...]
‘Stop! In the Name of Love’
The Supremes’ lead singer, Diana Ross, pleaded with her man not to leave her and go to another woman. The lyrics of that 1965 hit cried, “Stop! In the name of love before you break my heart. Baby baby, I’m aware of where you go / Each time you leave my door / I watch you walk down the street / Knowing your other love you’ll meet.” That’s how a lot of small group leaders feel when some of their participants begin to miss, look around for something else, and leave. They want to do anything … [Read more...]
Decision counselors and follow-up
When I accepted Jesus as my Savior as a boy, I walked the aisle at the end of an evangelistic service. Someone filled out a card with my name and address and then the pastor presented me to the church. I was voted in as a member right on the spot pending my baptism. Churches today are taking a closer look at how they receive decisions. Those who continue to live a lifestyle contrary to biblical teaching are being received under a form of “watch care.” They don’t have voting rights and … [Read more...]
Training church members as missionaries
Jesus began His earthly ministry with laity from a variety of backgrounds. By the time the Holy Spirit indwelled them permanently in Acts 2, most of the disciples exhibited mission-specific transformations. If Peter, who began with no missions training—and was likely illiterate—had jumped straight into ministry, he would have likely gone into humanitarian work doing something like helping people learn to fish. However, after being with Jesus and the Twelve, Peter developed speaking and … [Read more...]
Impactful evangelism ideas – Part 2 of 3
What works best to share the gospel message among those where you live? Here are several ideas that church leaders across Missouri have considered or are doing. 1. Recruit and train Christian music groups to conduct a musical festival at a special event. Raise money for backpacks to help poor children to be ready for school. 2. Ask an elementary school principal for the name and contact information of a newly immigrated child. Have families in the church adopt the child and their … [Read more...]
Impactful evangelism ideas – Part 1 of 3
One of the most helpful exercises when training missionaries is to spend some time listing evangelism ideas that offer the greatest potential for impacting people with the gospel. This is a challenging exercise for many. Here are several ideas that churches have been encouraged to attempt – and many are – throughout Missouri. Maybe this will spark some new outreach methods for you and your church. 1. Conduct a survey simply asking if those in that home would be willing to conduct a Bible … [Read more...]
Should evangelizing be work or play?
A number of veteran IMB missionaries were given personality tests and then given four samples of print materials to evaluate. Since this was my project, I assumed that the stern accountant-types would choose terse text and bullet-point layouts with conceptual analysis. Not so. The missionaries regardless of their personality type all chose print media that had lots of photos and testimonials of personal struggles or victories. They chose play over work every time. There is a sociological … [Read more...]
8 elements leading to community-wide revival
“Jesus Freak” is a label that suits me well. I was part of the Jesus Movement in the 1970s. Our Baptist church’s youth group conducted a weekly prayer meeting that attracted many lost kids and youth groups from several other churches. Keep in mind the setting: small town, rampant drugs and alcohol, over half of the freshman classes never graduated high school, unchurched families moved in with a new manufacturing plant, stagnant churches, perfunctory Bible teaching, and few if any teens … [Read more...]
Leading real change for evangelizing
The Lord must be trying to tell me something. I’ve been reading about change and attended what I thought was a seminar on church revitalization, but it was really about leading lasting change. Many of the same principles were used. John Kotter has the best reputation in the business world for “leading change.” He’s got a great book by that name, too. Kotter has eight steps to change that are widely recognized as successful. If your church or ministry needs change to actively making … [Read more...]
Are we training our pastors wrong?
The email said, “Mark, we’d like you to address this topic: ‘Are We Training Our Pastors Wrong?’” Now, there’s a good way to alienate yourself from godly men you have served alongside for several decades! At least I was able to add, “Or How Can We Train Pastors More Effectively?” The article required hours of research. I began to understand that there was a disconnect between pastors and their church members. The Bible created the biggest gap. Biblical ignorance is rampant in our churches. … [Read more...]
Is awakening imminent, and will you be included?
Bob Bakke is an authority on revival and spiritual awakening. In a symposium in which Jim Wells, MBC team leader, Strategic Partnerships, and I participated, Bakke spoke in detail about the movement in Scotland that spilled to America and exploded in Cane Ridge, Ky. The Cane Ridge Revival united whites and blacks, rich and poor, rural and urban for weeks. Known as the Second Great Awakening, the Holy Spirit had people praying and crying out to God. And God moved in their midst. Moving … [Read more...]
Servant evangelism: ‘Crazy love’ lights up Missouri
Reports are coming in from churches lighting up their communities for Jesus! Darron Edwards serves as pastor of United Believers Church in Kansas City. They conducted “Transformers” evangelism training in April. “Mothers Like You,” was a prayer breakfast conducted on the Saturday before Mother’s Day. There were 21 women that made a commitment to return to church. In June, the church distributed more than 1,100 water bottles in 10 strategic locations. In July and August, they conducted VBS … [Read more...]
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