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Ask Salt&Light : How do I share the Gospel gently?

Pastor Barney Lau // January 31, 2019, 12:34 am

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Photo by Mimi Thian on Unsplash.

Dear Salt&Light,

How can I start sharing the Gospel with my colleagues without appearing like I’m out to “convert” people? 

Isabel C, 27, Research Assistant 

Talking about the Gospel without walking in the Gospel results in people balking at the Gospel!

The late British evangelist Rodney “Gipsy” Smith once quipped: “There are five Gospels: Matthew, Mark, Luke, John and the Christian, but most people never read the first four.”

Paul pleads with the Ephesians church this way: “I … implore you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling with which you have been called…” (Ephesians 4:1 NASB).

The Christian is the living, walking, talking Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Christian witness before a pluralistic, sceptical and critical watching world is both evangelism and testimony together.

Evangelism is sharing the Gospel with others; testimony is walking the Gospel before others.

A testimony by itself is not the Gospel, but a Christlike testimony exemplifies and amplifies one’s evangelism of the Gospel.

A Christian’s job in the workplace is his or her witness.

Converting people is the Holy Spirit’s job description.

A testimony by itself is not the Gospel, but a Christlike testimony exemplifies and amplifies one’s evangelism of the Gospel.

Ours is to first walk the talk authentically, and then effectively talk the walk in a manner that is attractive for people to come along without feeling that we are out to convert them.

More often than not, it is our walk that gains us the right to speak, to be heard, and to a place in people’s heart.

We gain the right to speak by earning our stripes – like the stripes of a soldier – in being competent in our skills and proficient at our work, regardless of profession, seniority and industry. We gain the right to speak when we have paid our dues.

In a performance-driven workplace and meritocratic society, delivering on work responsibilities and commitments consistently and sustainably is the basic expectation of anyone, what more the Christian.

Earning the right to be heard is about how we conduct ourselves while we do our job. People can smell a fake from a mile away.

We earn it when our words, conduct, lifestyle and values matches the Christian labels we wear to work, despite and amidst the complexities and difficulties of life and work.

In a performance-driven workplace, delivering on work responsibilities and commitments is the basic expectation of anyone, what more the Christian.

People care that you care, not that you know.

When people frequently see their Christian colleagues genuinely care more about them than their usefulness and contributions, they take note, and over time, a place is carved out in their hearts for us to reach out to them.

Jesus obviously knew what he was talking about in John 13:35 when He said that “by this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another”.

‘BLESS’ is a simple acronym we can use in our authentic Christian witness:

  • Begin with praying for specific colleagues. We begin by praying for their welfare at work and at home, for God-given divine appointments to befriend and build a relationship.
  • Listen to our colleagues. Listen with our whole being to their life stories, their joys, their struggles, and so forth. This is a simple way to earn a genuine friendship.
  • Eat with our colleagues. Lunch breaks at work are excellent easy-going opportunities to build and invest in the friendship. You might be surprised at where lunch or coffee-break conversations may lead.
  • Serve colleagues by doing helpful things for them. It could be helping out with a work-related task, or providing a simple, packed lunch for them in the midst of their busyness, or a discreet gesture of praying for them with their agreement. The point is to demonstrate Christian love by doing things that matter to them.
  • Share Christ. When we have been praying for, relating with, serving our colleagues, God will bring about the right moment to share our testimony, story and the Gospel. Our job is to obey in such God-given moments. Share Christ simply and sensitively what He has done for us, and what He has done for humanity, and leave the result to God. Who knows, the Holy Spirit might have already worked in your colleagues, and we have the privilege of leading them to Christ.

‘BLESS’ works best when we have earned the right to speak and to be heard.

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About the author

Pastor Barney Lau

Pastor Barney Lau is a Pastor and Director of Ministries in Covenant Evangelical Free Church. Prior to a personal calling to serve full-time in Covenant EFC in 2008, Barney was the Managing Director of Microsoft Singapore. He continues to be active in the secular marketplace serving as independent director on the boards of companies.