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The Bold But Not Beautiful

Why does it have to be the creepy, intimidating, domineering couch guy that is the vision for bold evangelism?

Last weekend I was sitting in my man cave and I hear my neighbor yelling at me to come over to give him a hand with the couch he is giving away. Someone had come to pick it up.

As soon as I get over there, the guy who came to get the couch starts launching in…

Ben, do you know that you are a sinner and have broken every command of God?

Ben, do you think you are a good person?

Ben, have you ever told a lie?

Ben, have you ever used the Lord’s name in vain?

On and on he went for fifteen minutes all without us even being able to get a word in.

It was one of the slimiest forms of evangelism I have be around in a while.

This guy – who means so well – is why we hate evangelism!!!!

  • He controlled the conversation
  • He asked leading questions
  • He jammed “knowledge” down our throat
  • He was condescending

Herald of Good News

Look, evangelism means to be bring or bear good news. Biblically speaking we are announcing the reign and rule of a new King. His Kingdom is at hand and this is GREAT news. Why is it great news? Because healing, forgiveness, peace, and justice is now obtainable in true forms. It is time to turn around and believe this awesome message and learn to live in it.

Do we need to turn around (repent) and start living differently? Yes.

Do we need to change our minds and believe something new? Yes.

Is there an awesome new reality called the Kingdom of God? Yes.

Is God’s intention to get this message out a slimy domineering approach? Heck No.

I’m Going Nuts

I spent a good hour dealing with this conversation, confronting the “evangelist” and then debriefing with my neighbor in my back yard while my kids played.

Were any of the things this couch evangelist said wrong? No. But what he said wasn’t the problem. It was how he said it.

He had zero tact, and no relational ability. He dogmatically pounded my neighbor with the words of God.

If that is the picture of following Jesus, I don’t blame my neighbor (or anyone for that matter) for rejecting it.

The Bold But Not Beautiful

What left me pondering for the rest of the day, though, was the fact that this guy was so bold. Look, he drove over to pick up a coach, he struck up a “conversation”, and then proceeded to share his beliefs with a stranger with little concern for the consequence or rejection.

I hated what this guy was saying and how. His approach was off-putting.

But I loved his boldness and his ability to be out with his faith.

It made me sad.

I want a world where relational, kind, graceful people who LOVE Jesus are way out with their faith in Jesus.

I want these people talking about Jesus.

Why does it have to be the creepy, intimidating, domineering couch guy that is the vision for bold evangelism?

That makes me sad.

We need to be bold, but we don’t have to be pushy.

If you want to grow in relationally bold evangelism, consider these three options:

  1. Watch these training videos
  2. Invite me to come train your group
  3. Read this post – A Refreshing Evangelist

And, if you are new to my site, make sure to start here and get acquainted.

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  1. Hey Beau–I love these real life stories of “Awkward” situations–thanks for writing about it. I can relate to your frustration with the bull-force evangelist, but I kept wondering how your neighbor was reacting to him? One thing I really like is how you debriefed the experience with him afterwards. The fact that you had a 1-hour conversation about God, Christians, the message of the gospel, etc. was actually set up by the negative experience. Some of my best faith conversations have been these debrief/apologies for what bonehead Christians are doing. It’s a blessing in disguise.

  2. For every bold Christian like this man there are 100s of Christians who won’t even say the name of Jesus in public…I would rather error on being a couch guy than be silent! A boat that is docked can’t move but one out to sea God can move!

    • Arlene, point well taken and I thought about that a lot that day. I loved his boldness. But I don’t want to error on the side of either. I find this guy as dangerous as a silent Christian.

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