From Guilt to Joy
Evangelism for non-Evangelists
Can we rescue evangelism from the negative stereotypes and make it something ordinary Christians can enter into with integrity, and even joy?
The CEO of Starbuck’s has said he wants every Starbuck’s customer to become a Starbuck’s evangelist. In other words, his goal is that every customer should be so excited about their “experience” at Starbucks’s that they spontaneously share it with their friends. Ironically enough, in recent years there has been a reaction in much of the church against evangelism, because it seems programmed and artificial, and often to compromise the integrity of both evangelist and evangelisee (if there is such a word). This workshop offers a look at the experience of how people actually come to Christ, and offers a model of evangelism that is authentic and personal. There is a popular book about evangelism called Evangelism Made Slightly Less Difficult! Most of us will always find evangelism a challenge, but at least it can become a skill that we can feel good about learning.
John Bowen was a campus evangelist for Inter-Varsity Christian Fellowship before moving to Wycliffe College (University of Toronto) in 1997 to become Professor of Evangelism. He is author of a number of books, including Evangelism for Normal People (Augsburg Fortress 2002). He is not really an evangelist, but he is learning.