With Labor Day over and the school year starting, the new rhythms of the year begin again. Outward has a couple of things on the schedule for you this fall. We have a new series turning lessons from a good book on evangelism into shorter, digestible reads. Starting next week we have an interesting podcast for you.
But as we all settle into a new fall schedule, we want to bring you a quote to get you thinking outside of the box. In Spring we did a series about John Leonard’s book, “Get Real.” Those who read it know the author had an affinity for making you think–whether you agreed with him or not. And this quote is nothing different! We’ve had this in our back pocket since that series and thought it would be a good way to start off the fall. Just to keep you on your toes and thinking as fall rolls around:
“In traditional evangelism, you would never pass up an opportunity to share the gospel when someone asked you to. You would open the Bible and go through every single verse in John that spoke about heaven—long after the person’s interest in knowing had passed. In a real approach to evangelism, you stop talking long before that point. Don’t dampen curiosity, raise it. Never say more than people want to hear. If someone isn’t listening to you, stop speaking and say, “You seem to have other things on your mind so I’ll stop right here. Thank you for your time.” Every time I’ve done that people say, “No, no, I am interested. Go on.” But I never do, and you shouldn’t either. It is better to leave people wishing you’d said more than to have them wish you’d already left. Raising curiosity also means not saying what people expect you to say. So much of our communication of the gospel is cliché. We think we’re being faithful to the gospel because we tell the old, old story in the same old, old way. People stop listening to us, believing, “I’ve heard all this before.” And they might just be right.” ~John Leonard in Get Real