It is always an interesting experience to be evangelized by someone who does not know you. Yesterday I was getting on the bus and saw a lady at the back with some large display boards speaking about the love of God and the blessings available from God. Given that the seats on the bus were mainly taken I deemed it appropriate to go and sit on a seat near her. I asked her a question about her boards and the contents thereof. She responded to this. Here are some thoughts on what ensued:
- For the time we talked, which was about 10 minutes, she did not ask me anything about myself.
- She talked at me for that time. I did not feel she engaged with me at all.
- I felt she just wanted to dump information on me and not win me to her message and for her Lord.
- She got off the bus before me so she know what the maximum time she would have. There was no sense of establishing where I was at in spiritual terms. There was no sense of helping me forward in my understanding.
- I was just left with a brain-dump upon me which I would have to sift for myself.
- What she said was a bit of a hotch-potch. Some stuff was really good: other stuff was at best confused.
- I did not feel she was interested in me or my spiritual welfare even though she spoke about hell.
What did I learn:
- Be interested in the person you are speaking to.
- Establish where they are at spiritually.
- Listen to them.
- Don’t just dump information, even though that information may be correct and wholesome.
- Be clear on the basics of the gospel.
- Think about how long you are likely to have speaking with the person. For some it may be a minute; for some it may be a lifetime. Your approach will differ accordingly.