Don’t Waste Your Summer

9 Jul

Long lie-ins, watching entire seasons of 24 in a matter, sunbathing in the garden. It is often the case that Christian students spend their holidays just as unwisely as their non-Christian friends. But should that be the case?

Not all. Paul tells us “Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time, because the days are evil.” (Eph 5:15-16, ESV). Watching your entire DVD collection through twice is not Godly.

So over the coming days I will tell you 9 ways you can redeem your holiday. We start today by considering evangelistic ministry:

1. Evangelistic Ministry

By evangelistic ministry I mean telling non-Christians the good news about Jesus Christ. We are called to “make disciples of all nations” (Matt 28:19, ESV) and what better way to use your time than to bring others in the kingdom. There are a number of ways you can get involved with Evangelism during the holidays:

1. Missions:

You may be a bit late now, but many organisations run short-term missions abroad and in this country, ranging from all 3 months to 1 week long. Make sure that the organisation you get involved with stands for sound doctrine and will provide opportunities for you to witness to others, as many never preach the Gospel.

If you’d like to do mission work this summer, ask your Church if there are any organisations they know of. Or look up some mission teams on the internet and read their about section. Look for evidence they are actually preaching the Gospel, these are the ones you want to get involved in.

2. Kids’ Clubs:

There are many outreach events for children that take place over the summer, including residentials. Again check the soundness of these organisations. You could go on a camp that isn’t teaching good Bible teaching as a witness, but it’s not advised. Also find out if your church is doing a Kids’ Club over the summer and if they are get involved.

3. Church Outreach:

Ask a pastor or elder what outreach the church is doing and how you can get involved. If your church isn’t doing outreach at the moment, organise some yourself. Consider arranging a meal where Christians can invite their friends and ask your pastor, or a visiting speaker, to give a short talk. Most churches would be very supportive of you in setting up outreach events. If they’re not, find a new one.

4. One-to-ones:

This is where you meet up with a non-Christian to discuss the faith. Some people meet up and just allow the non-Christian to ask questions. This is ill advised as you will have only a short time to answer them (meaning you may get it wrong) and they are setting the agenda.

If you have non-Christian friends who are interested in the Gospel try and get them to committ to reading Christianity Explored or a book of the Bible with you. Make sure you spend time preparing and get them onto the Gospel as quickly and frequently as possible.

5. Spending Time With Non-Christian Friends and Family:

This isn’t necessarily evangelism, however it’s a lot easier to witness to people if you know them. Meeting up with non-Christians enables you to preach the Gospel to them. However, don’t compromise your witness by sinking to their level. Be a shining beacon in your times together. It may be that out of this arises a chance for a one-to one.

6. Social Action:

Social action is doing good works in the community as a church, helping the poor and the community as a whole. As with the last one, this isn’t evangelism necessarily. However, you can use the opportunity to invite people to Church and tell them the reason why you care for the community.

7. The internet:

There are many forums and chat rooms on the internet. Places like Christian Forums are great places to witness to non-Christians and nominal Christians. These websites are swarming with bad teaching, bad witness and (lucky for us) non-Christians. We need real Christians to come in and, with Christ-like humility and conviction, commit themselves to pointing other members to the Gospel. Also consider going on non-Christian (including “liberal Christian”) blogs and forums and leaving comments drawing focus to Christ. No doubt you’ll get some abuse but you never know how God may use you.

8. Cold Contact:

This is going up to people you don’t know and telling the Gospel This style of evangelism (probably rightly) is going out of fashion, however it has had success in the past, both in the Bible and Christian History. Standing on the steps of your local pub and delivering a sermon on justification probably won’t work (but if you’ve got the guts and the gifts, I won’t stop you).

For the faint hearted however, this doesn’t need to be scary. Hand out (or post) tracts or gospels with the address to you church inside. Questionaires are a really good way to get people talking (remember to give them an invite to a service, a tract or a gospel to finish). Just make sure the message of your tracts is true and that you don’t hinder the witness of your Church.

Conclusion

Many Christians are scared of evangelism, but we are commanded to do it. If Jesus has given his life to save us from our sin, we can overcome our fear to save others. This isn’t a job for others it’s a job for you.

Have any tips for doing evangelism? Know any missionary organisations needing volunteers fast? Want to tell others about your experiences in evangelism? Drop a comment below. I’d love to hear from you.

Come back on Thursday when we’ll discuss Ministry to Christians.

(Picture “Deckchair” by markbarky under the Creative Commons Licence)

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2 Responses to “Don’t Waste Your Summer”

  1. LyndaP July 21, 2008 at 4:11 pm #

    This is great! Found your site on Link Referral. Keep up the good work!!!

  2. Tim Wilson July 21, 2008 at 8:38 pm #

    Lynda it’s great to have you here! Thank you for your encouraging review. Hope to see you around more in the future!

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