I remember the first time my faith was questioned.
I was a freshman in high school, and up until then I had gone to a private Lutheran school. After a few months of school, a guy in my English class asked me out of the blue: “If God is so great, why does He allow evil in the world? Why are there children dying of starvation?”
I could feel my face getting red. My mind went blank. I honestly have no idea, I thought. I quickly stuttered, “Uh, I don’t know. . . let me ask my pastor and get back to you!”
That one line was the only piece of “evangelism” training I had been given. And, sure, this is sound advice—seeking wisdom about a difficult question is better than giving an answer that isn’t true—but in that moment, I used it as a cop-out to avoid a difficult conversation.
As a young person, I received little to no training in how to share my faith. The common sentiment was “Live your life in a way that makes people ask why you’re different!” Yeah, that’s true—I have had people ask and have had some cool conversations happen because of that—but sharing the Gospel often has to start with you because people aren’t seeking God.
“Being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you” is part of our call as Christians (1 Peter 3:15). Easier said than done, I know. Here are a few simple ways to share your faith.
Prepare an Elevator Pitch
This advice isn’t just for entrepreneurs looking to sell their business idea to the moguls on Shark Tank. (Although I’m certainly not comparing the Gospel to a ShamWow; it’s just always good to be able to tell the Gospel in a nutshell!) Even something as simple as this could suffice:
I’m a Christian because I believe that I am a sinner who can’t save myself. But God sent His only Son, Jesus, to die to save the sins of the whole world. With all the challenges I face in my life, I can always count on God to love me, care for me, and help me.
This short summary of the Gospel is meant to open up a bigger conversation about Jesus’ saving work.
Take Advantage of Little Moments
When you think about all the small moments throughout the day you have to share the Gospel in a small way, it’s almost overwhelming! Say a sincere “God bless!” to the cashier at the grocery store, the homeless person you gave money to, or the person who let you go ahead of them in the Starbucks line.
Pray in Public
To many Christians, praying before a meal is something that happens regardless of where they’re at, but I’ll admit that more often than not I am either so ready to dig into my burrito or too self-conscious to pray out loud in public before eating. But praying out loud when you’re at a restaurant is a great opportunity to witness to those around you in a subtle way. People will notice—whether the people at the table next to you or your waiter notices, you’ll be making a statement about your faith.
Praying for other people in public often makes people uncomfortable—but I’m not talking about saying a silent prayer for someone while you ride the subway to work. Have you ever prayed with someone in person? It’s definitely a little intimidating, but so rewarding! If someone shares a personal struggle or challenge they’re going through, ask them if they’d mind if you prayed for them right then and there. The phrase “I’m praying for you!” has become almost trite and meaningless in our culture. Praying for someone in person brings back the intentionality of prayer.
Sharing your faith doesn’t always involve pulling out your Bible and preaching to others—it can be as simple as a prayer for someone in need or a genuine blessing on someone’s day.
Do you have any specific ways you share your faith in your daily life?