One thing I wish I knew before I started sharing my faith was…I’m not the only one who struggles with sharing my faith!
For years I’ve felt anxious about sharing my faith. I worry that I will make people uncomfortable or defensive, and I think that if I let people know I follow Jesus, I’ll have to immediately tackle all the hard questions people might have. All this often makes me want to shy away.
Have you felt like this too?
For me, I think I felt like this for so long because I felt pressure to see people saved, and I didn’t realise that I could grow my confidence by simply practicing sharing the gospel more! So let’s explore this more:
Feeling Pressure To Save
To me, evangelism used to mean it was all on me to make sure the person I was talking to heard about Jesus, and if I wasn’t mustering up enough courage to share my faith, I should feel the weight of their eternal destiny on my shoulders. Whoa. Talk about pressure.
When we put that pressure on our shoulders, it’s hardly surprising we feel nervous and rarely practice sharing our faith. Is this the way evangelism should feel: an impossible mission for incapable people? Well…yes but also no.
Evangelism feels impossible when we take on God’s role of saving people. Evangelism is a lot easier when we recognise our role is to simply share what God has done for us with us and to simply leave the ‘saving’ up to Him. I love the verse that says ‘Do not fear, Zion; do not let your hands hang limp. The Lord your God is with you, the Mighty Warrior who saves’ (Zeph. 3:16-17). Who does the saving here? God does…and he still does today!
So, what’s our role?
God has empowered us to be His witnesses! The enemy wants us to believe God is sending us out alone, empty-handed, and with a powerless message. But this is because the enemy knows the opposite is true (Luke 24:46-49).
Practice Makes Perfect
It can also be helpful to view sharing our faith as a skill we develop with practice. Sure, some people may seem more natural at sharing the gospel than us, but it’s probably because they’ve practiced much more than us.
Through my work, I talk with a lot of pastors and ministry leaders. And guess what? Most of them struggle with sharing their faith—especially in one-on-one conversations with their family and friends. I guess evangelism isn’t easy even for so-called “professional Christians.” So ask yourself: who do you surround yourself with and who do you know anyone who shares their faith consistently and naturally? I’m trying to surround myself with a few more people who share their faith frequently because I believe I become like the people I’m around.
If you need more than simple reminders like ‘God is the one who saves’ and ‘you can practice sharing your faith without being perfect’, it may help you to know you’re not alone in needing additional support. Did you know that the apostle Paul got nervous when sharing the gospel? Yep, that’s right. The zealous, brilliant writer of half the New Testament got butterflies in his stomach when it came to evangelism. That’s why he asked for his friends to pray for him to be fearless when explaining the gospel to people (Ephesians 6:19). When you’re afraid, do you have friends to whom you can reach out?
I hope you know now that you’re not alone in feeling like sharing your faith is really hard. In fact, there are probably more Christians in this camp than not. But I didn’t write this article to say God’s fine if we stay here….God saved us and sent us to go! And I’ve seen how the more I share my faith, the more I want to share my faith. It’s been hugely encouraging to see my family and friends more open to talking about faith and Jesus than I anticipated – I just needed to open my mouth and not be afraid to ask clear questions about faith in a non-judgemental way.
So what do you say? Let’s get out and practice. Instead of feeling pressured to make a conversation happen, let’s experience the joy of joining the conversation God is already having with those around us.
1. Now that we understand it is God who saves people, not us, how does this change our attitude to sharing your faith?
2. In what ways does fear prevent me from speaking about Jesus?
3. Are there any people in my life who are particularly good at sharing the gospel who I could spend more time with?