Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Creative Evangelism

“Jesus as always used stories and illustrations like these when speaking to the crowds…” Matthew 13:34a

There is no end to the creative ways we can present the Good News to people. I love the element of mystery and story- telling. God’s people have discovered what works for them and use it for His glory. Isn’t it thrilling to see how the freshness of the salvation story grabs attention and satisfies spiritual thirst? My friend, Kristen, has a unique way of sharing the Good News that works for her. Listen to her story:

“While I was having coffee in a restaurant, I made an origami bird out of the doily underneath the coffee cup. The Turkish waiter saw it and I said, “koosh!”(bird). My total Turkish vocabulary of ten words came out of my mouth. How wonderful it was to speak of Jesus to him. “Jesus loves you. Jesus is the bread of life.”

Kristen went on to explain to me, “Origami seems to attract everyone. Once on an airplane I folded flowers to pass the time. My seat mate became curious. She asked, “What are you making?” which sparked a conversation about her hobbies and interests. Before the plane landed she gratefully received a gospel of John(with some origami flowers tucked inside). Another time I had only ten minutes to visit a school in a refugee camp. But this was enough time to fold a bird for a friendly girl, show her how it’s wings flap when you move the tail and tell her of Jesus’ love for her. At home I like to invite young ladies over to make holiday cards decorated with folded hearts, pumpkins, poinsettias and even camels! What a great way to connect, even if someone’s English is limited. Origami is relatively easy to do and low-cost. The results are beautiful. It makes everybody smile.”

Valentine's Day is a great time for creative evangelism. Sometimes I deliver plates to my Muslim friends filled with homemade chocolate chip cookies or chocolates and give them Valentine cards which are meant for friends, not lovers. We play the game of tic tac toe, explaining that oxox stands for "I love you". Often on Valentine's Day I explain a brief history of Saint Valentine and that the day is all about expressing love for others. I ask them questions like: How do you say ‘I love you’ in your language? Do you tell your husband that? Does he tell you? How do you say, ‘I love you, God?’ Do you ever tell Him that? Do you hear Him tell you that He loves you? How do you say in your language, ‘God loves good people, bad people, white people, black people, healthy people, sick people, enemies, etc?’ It is amazing how naturally the gospel story of God's love can be shared on Valentine's Day. Why not give it a try? 

Dear heavenly Father, please give birth to more creativity when I talk about you to others. In Jesus’ name, Amen.