5 Ways To Tell Your Friends About Jesus Without Being Weird
Chances are, if you’ve become a Jesus follower, you want to tell friends about it. Many have the misconception that this is because we are told to do so, or because if we don’t then we’re not a ‘real Christian’. This isn’t the case – we just want to share with you how Jesus has radically changed our lives for the better, and how He can do the same for you. And, you also have every right to disagree with us (shock horror, I know).
Over the years, Christians haven’t always been the best at spreading the Gospel, and that’s okay – we’re human too, and we make mistakes just like everyone else. I think we over complicate the matter, or end up feeling far too awkward about it – but it doesn’t have to be that way. So, here are five ways that you can tell your friends about Jesus without being weird (hopefully).
1) Don’t Pester Your Friends
To a certain extent, I think there’s a somewhat legitimate reason that Christians are labelled as ‘Bible bashers’ – we are very often too quick to shout scriptures at people, rant at people, and lecture at people; the key here being that these things are done at people. This shouldn’t be the case; we should have decent, genuine conversations with people that are two-way and interactive. I don’t think we should get all deep and theological at the drop of a hat – it should be when the opportunity comes up in conversation, or somebody asks you a question, or if you are asking what someone else’s opinion is of a certain topic. Shouting your opinion at people shows little or no respect, and I think that we all need to meditate some more on Jesus’ wise words:
‘Don’t pick on people, jump on their failures, criticize their faults – unless, of course, you want the same treatment. That critical spirit has a way of boomeranging. It’s easy to see a smudge on your neighbour’s face and be oblivious to the ugly sneer on your own. Do you have the nerve to say, ‘Let me wash your face for you,’ when your own face is distorted by contempt? It’s this whole traveling road-show mentality all over again, playing a holier-than-thou part instead of just living your part. Wipe that ugly sneer off your own face, and you might be fit to offer a washcloth to your neighbour.’ (Matthew 7:1-5 MSG)
Before we start yelling at others about how they should live their life, we should focus on seeking God about how to live our own lives first.
2) Simplicity and Honesty
We overdo things. We use big Christian words, we exaggerate, and we leave people more confused than before we started talking to them. We need to be simple and honest. If Jesus has done something awesome in your life and you want to share it with your friends, tell them about it. Don’t overdo it, don’t make it into a sermon, and don’t exaggerate it. Just share with your friends the real, everyday impact that God has on your life. There is power in simplicity; the Gospel at its core is simple, and while it is great to have deep theological discussions every once in a while, being simple and honest about the on-going, positive change that Jesus is bringing into your life is often one of the most powerful ways we can share Him with those around us.
3) Social Media
This generation has the power to reach more people than any other group in history. We can instantly connect with people from across the world, and the internet opens many doors and windows of opportunity. Most people share pretty much everything online – this isn’t always the best idea, but social media can also provide an incredible way of sharing the Gospel. If a piece of scripture has been speaking powerfully to you lately, why not tweet about it? If you enjoy illustrating your Bible, why not Instagram it? If you love writing about the things that God has been speaking into your heart, why not start a blog? Social media shows a snapshot of someone’s personality, and since our faith is usually a huge part of our life, I think it’s okay to share that online, too.
However, it’s so important to remember that your friends have every right to unfollow/unfriend you if they don’t like what they’re seeing, and they also have the right to disagree with what you are posting. We must remember to ‘be ready to speak up and tell anyone who asks why you’re living the way you are, and always with the utmost courtesy’ and we must ‘keep a clear conscience before God so that when people throw mud at you, none of it will stick’ (1 Peter 3:15-16 MSG)
4) Offer to Pray
As a Jesus follower, I hope that when you feel life is overwhelming, or trials and tribulations come your way, you pray about it. Prayer brings us into the throne room of God where we can fall into His loving embrace. It aligns our hearts with His, and He gives us the incomparable peace that can’t be found anywhere else.
When life gets difficult, we should pray. So when life gets difficult for one of our friends, why don’t you offer to pray for them? Even if they don’t believe in God, the fact that you’ve offered to take some time out to commit to praying for their welfare will most likely have an impact on them. It shows that you care for them and genuinely want the best for them, and this is only a snapshot of how Jesus feels about them. And, if you’re feeling brave, you could even ask if you could lay hands on them (i.e., pray for them there and then, with them present). Prayer brings heaven to earth, and ‘the prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective’ (James 5:16 NIV)
5) Your Life
The Gospel in action is powerful stuff. When your friends see that Jesus has had an incredible impact on your life, they will most certainly want to know more (even if that’s just asking why you live life the way you do). Perhaps one of the reasons why people lack interest in Christianity is because they don’t see how it can change their life for the better right here, right now. Christianity is about so much more than going to Heaven when you die. It is about bringing Heaven to earth today; it’s about seeing the captive set free, the sick healed, and the lost found. It is about finding true purpose, identity, and worth. Perhaps we need to stop straining to prove God’s existence and start living out what He has done in our life; let God’s work in you do the talking. We need to take the backseat and let God take the limelight.
When it comes down to it, spreading the Gospel isn’t about new programmes, agendas, billboards, picket signs, or yelling angrily from street corners. It’s about loving God and loving others. Sometimes we forget what Jesus told us to do:
“Let me give you a new command: Love one another. In the same way I loved you, you love one another. This is how everyone will recognize that you are my disciples—when they see the love you have for each other.” (John 13:35 MSG)