Why is it that many Christians become frustrated and don’t follow through when they are asked to bring their friends to an outreach event, or to tell their friends about Christ? Maybe it’s because we don’t know many non-Christians and those we do know, we consider to be acquaintances rather than friends. This makes it even more difficult to bridge the gap to spiritual issues. Have Christians become cocooned?
Cocooning was a buzzword of the ‘80s. VCRs and Domino’s Pizza have made it possible for people to spin a web of safety and security in their own comfortable environment rather than venture out into the world.
Sometimes Christians cocoon into spiritual safety and security rather than take risks to build relationships with the lost. We fill our evenings with Bible studies, fill our lives with Christian friends and end up isolating ourselves from the very culture to which we were called to be salt and light.
The Christian community should be a place from which we can confidently go out into battle building common-ground relationships with the lost. It should not be our fortress where we hide from the world separating ourselves from those we are seeking to reach.
Jesus was often criticized by the religious leaders of His day for associating with tax collectors and sinners. His response revealed both His heart for and pursuit of the lost: “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners” (Mark 2:17).
As Christians, our mission is to reach out into the world around us and love people into a lifechanging relationship with Christ. The following steps are principles for building bridges of friendship with lost students.
1. Make new friends
3. Give yourself
4. Tell them
Damon and Andrea were involved in Cru in college. After graduating they got married, and Damon went to medical school while Andrea got a job. After becoming involved in a church, they helped give leadership to a church-based campus ministry with students attending from two universities. They also got to know another couple from Damon’s class in medical school.
They prayed for this couple, took them to church, and spent time with them. After several months, their friends received Christ. Because they had a relationship with Damon and Andrea (and with the church), it was natural for the new couple to receive follow-up and become involved in the church.
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