One of the most inspiring words God uses to describe Christians is “ambassadors” (2 Corinthians 5:20).
Generally speaking, an “ambassador” is a respected official who:
- Reflects those who gave him or her authority
- Acts as a representative of a nation or ruler
- Lives and works in a foreign land
- Builds relationships
In the same way, Christians serve as Christ’s ambassadors by representing our King. We live and work and build relationships here on earth – all the time remembering that we’re here to represent Someone and somewhere else.
Do you want to be a great ambassador for Christ as you share your faith? Here are ten important reminders.
1. Attitude is everything.
There’s a reason that employers look first at potential employees’ attitude. It impacts job performance – and a great attitude can overcome many obstacles. In the same way, our attitude about sharing our faith makes a world of difference. Do you see evangelism as something you have to do, or something you get to do?
2. Mission starts with relationships.
Evangelism done without connection to others can seem canned and mechanical – like a sales pitch. But when our message comes in the midst of relationship or while we are serving others, our words are much more likely to captivate and connect.
3. Before starting, pray!
This may seem like a no-brainer, but prayer should saturate our evangelism efforts – before, during, and afterward. We should admit any fears we have, ask God to open our eyes to opportunities, pray for humility and respect toward others, and ask God to do great things.
4. Always be ready.
You can’t be ready for every question you might get or every reaction someone might have. But you can know your Bible better this week than you did last week. It’s funny how the Holy Spirit brings verses to mind that we’ve already memorized… and not verses we haven’t! Another vital part of evangelism preparation is abiding with the Lord. We can’t give away what we don’t already possess.
5. Styles differ.
Throughout the Bible, we see many ways people have effectively shared their faith. From sharing your story, to inviting people to church, to serving others – there are many ways you can share the hope you have in Christ. While we each tend to use the style(s) that fit our personality best, we must be willing to share our faith however (and whenever) God leads.
6. Storyline matters.
As often as we can, we should help people understand the entire “storyline” of God’s message of reconciliation: God created a perfect world and had a perfect relationship with people. But that world fell from God’s original design because of our sin. God had a plan, and He redeemed (“bought back”) the entire world through His Son – and He’s now begun restoring all of it to His original design. When we share our faith, we not only offer people forgiveness of sin or a one-way trip to heaven. We also offer people the chance to join God’s Great Story and participate in His family.
7. Ask questions.
Questions should play a big part in spiritual conversations. Asking someone about their background and beliefs not only shows respect, it also helps you determine what they need to learn about the free gift of grace available in Christ. Questions also help when someone brings up objections. Asking questions like, “What do you mean by that?” or “Have you ever considered…?” can help you guide the conversation and communicate the gospel in a winsome, relational way.
8. Discipline of evangelism trumps the gift of evangelism.
Sure, some people are naturally more skilled than others at engaging in spiritual conversations. Yet the Bible makes it clear that each of us is called to share our faith; we are all “ministers of reconciliation.” That means sharing our faith is a spiritual discipline, regardless of whether we feel talented, experienced, or gifted. The more we live out this command, the more comfortable and skilled we’ll get.
9. Obedience isn’t determined by outcome.
Regardless of someone’s response to our words, obedience is determined by whether we share our faith and present our message in wise and loving ways. Of course we all rejoice with the angels in heaven when someone chooses to follow Christ. We cannot control the results of a gospel-centered conversation, but we can be obedient to faithfully share the Good News.
10. Remove excuses.
Some believers don’t share the gospel with others because they’re afraid or they don’t know how. In reality, our reasons for avoiding evangelism may have more to do with apathy or a lack of empathy. We get distracted by the things around us, forgetting that each person we encounter is a spiritual being with an eternal destination. Remove your excuses by remembering that someone, somewhere changed your eternity by telling you about your great need for a Savior.
We hope that these ideas help you as you seek to be a better AMBASSADOR for the Lord. (And if you didn’t notice already, each of those letters is spelled out in the headings above!)