Imagine for a moment, what it might be like to be a lost sinner. Perhaps you are actually a “good” person—as the world measures good. Perhaps you actually live by Christian principals in terms of morality and ethics. Yes, there are people out there like that—lost sinners who do not spend hours in front of their computers viewing pornography; who are faithful to their wife; who are law abiding citizens; who don’t drink, or smoke, or do drugs.
Now think of what they may think of “Christianity”? They know little to nothing about Rome and the Reformation. They view Roman Catholics as “Christians” and what they hear about is all of the sexual misconduct cases that have bankrupted many diocese and the cover-up and transfer of these priests to new parishes. Many have watched TBN and have seen the “Christians” on those programs and openly joke about it at work. Everyone knows about the scandal surrounding Jimmy and Tammy Faye Baker’s ministry. They also hear about Governors who are professing “christians” who are exposed as adulterers and then compare themselves to King David as they ask for forgiveness.
Be aware of this and be willing to acknowledge this. If they know that you are a Christian, is it any wonder that they do not really want to listen to anything you have to say to them? Don’t be angry, upset, or defensive with them because of their reaction to you. It is one thing to realize that the Cross is foolishness to those that are perishing; it is also important to realize that those who are perishing see you as a fool by association for very good reasons. Acknowledge that with them and to them.
Why is this important? It is important because God can use this to open doors of communication. We, as Christians, are living in a different time then Christians back in the New Testament times. When God took the life of Ananias and Sapphira, in the book of Acts for their disobedience, we are told that the outsiders dared not join them, but they esteemed them highly. I guarantee you that outsiders do not esteem “Christians” highly in our day and age and for very good reason.
I posted earlier about a conversation that I had recently with an Atheist that I work with where I said to her, “Christianity is not about Christians; Christianity is about Christ. I know you have a problem with Christians; but, how do you feel about Christ?” This opened a door for me to share with her that I understood why she might have a problem with “Christians” because that term has lost its meaning in today’s world. I told her that if she wants to know about Christ, I would be more than willing to continue our discussion.
Do not get defensive. There are very good reasons for people to not esteem you highly and not be willing to listen to you. Be okay with that. Be willing to listen to them! Be willing to explain things to them! Be equipped to share with them and have understanding as to why they see you as (frankly) a “wacko”. Love them enough to acknowledge their normal, logical, rational concerns with and reaction to “Christianity”.
Imagine for a moment what it might be like to be a lost sinner looking at “Christianity” today and then love them enough to show them Christ!