Why Evangelize?

Why Evangelize? What are your motives?

* Thanks to NakedPastor.com for use of this thought provoking art

Well meaning preachers and laymen sometime advocate evangelism  as though we should do it just because they said so or because the survival of our church depends on it. They beat this drum so hard that people feel guilty or fearful for not doing enough evangelism, for not obeying enough, for not leading enough people to the Lord.

Media professionals say there are only 5 primary reasons WHY people communicate. They are:

To inform
To entertain
To persuade or manipulate to our point of view
To question or challenge
For self expression ie. celebration, disapointment or love

Motivation matters! You see a politician waxing eloquent. Which of the above 5 motivations do you think they are exercising? None of the above motivations are wrong in themself. Let's get that straight.

Evangelizing or sharing good news seems like it can be driven by many of the motivations above. But Paul in 1 Corintians 13  said "if I speak ........but if I have not love I am a irritating gong." In V.2 he says without love in my communication "I am a nothing".

The fundamental question of “Why Evangelize?” begs for an answer that is not rooted in guilt or manipulation. It has to have an answer that is beyond church survival or we are no better than persuading politicians.

Let's do a gut check. When a friend informs us of a serious illness or death in her family, which of the above 5 motivations kicks in? When we see a neighbor who never leaves for worship on Sat or Sunday, what is our motivation?

If we can honestly say "I love Fred, I'd love to to see him in church with us celebrating forgiveness and finding purpose or meaning in life with me" --- how powerful is that! If we can say "I would love to introduce my co-worker to my friend Jesus, who is the best physician and healer in town" --  how cool is that!

When people see our heart radiating love - Christ's love oozing out - showing love - talking love -serving and showing concern - then evangelism happens. Lord, open wide the lid on my heart to let it ooze and leak your genuine caring love during my ordinary everyday walk.