I was recently reflecting on that pivotal moment in my spiritual journey and ministry when I realized how poorly I was doing at evangelism. When I say poorly, I really mean failing. Evangelism wasn’t on the radar in my youth ministry let alone my personal life. In fact, I suppose that in order to fail at something you have to be trying, and I wasn’t even doing that.
God began revealing this fact to me and through His working in my ministry and life I felt a strong conviction to solve this issue. You probably aren’t too surprised to learn that it didn’t take me too long to stumble on to an organization called Dare 2 Share. I have learned countless things from Greg Stier and this ministry and have had the opportunity in three different Student Ministry settings (1 as a volunteer sponsor and 2 as the full time Student Ministry Pastor) to implement various evangelism principles, ideas, curriculum, and tactics.
Here are 3 things you can do (that I started doing) to begin incorporating evangelism into your ministry setting:
- Share the Gospel every week. At first, this idea was the hardest to come to terms with. I guess it made rational sense in my mind but I can remember this sensation of stepping off a ledge and not knowing if my foot was going to find solid ground the first time I did this. I saw immediate impact as a result of implementing this principle nearly 10 years ago and continue to do so today.
- Train your students. My passion for evangelism and teens sharing their faith burns brightly within me, but I’ve had to wrestle through the fact that every student I have the opportunity to minister to will not embrace that passion with the same zeal. This is one of the big reasons I enjoy taking our students to evangelism training events. These kinds of experiences train them but also serve as a filter for me to see which students rise to the challenge and pursue their friends with the Gospel.
- Allow students to share their experiences. Even if there are only 1 or 2 students that catch the vision and start sharing their faith they will, as peers to your other students, have a unique opportunity to motivate the rest of group. Certainly we can all spare a few minutes out of our weekly program to allow students to share their stories. It is one thing for me to share the Gospel and my own evangelistic endeavors, but there is something highly impactful about students being encouraged and challenged by their friends.
These are 3 things I have found hugely beneficial to my ministry in implementing evangelism. What are some steps you have taken to focus on evangelism in your Student Ministry?