The following comes from our Synod’s Lutheran Hour Ministries and I believe addresses an issue for most of us:
The number one reason we, as Christians, avoid sharing our faith is fear. When asked the number one fear that hinders them from witnessing, time and time again Equipping to Share participants replied, “not knowing the right thing to say.”
The first step to overcoming a fear is to address it. If not having the right thing to say is one of the fears serving as an obstacle to your personal faith sharing, consider the below two points as you begin to address and conquer it.
Try to recall the time in your life when you were unable to multiply. I’m sure the very thought of being asked to do so terrified you. However, after studying and learning your timetables, you became comfortable spouting the answer to “What’s 5 times 5?” without blinking an eye. In fact, at this point, you likely can’t remember such a time when adding was your only mathematical capability.
Practice is the key to being prepared. The same rings true with confidently sharing the Gospel. Christians are directed to “always be prepared to give an account for the hope that is within you” (1 Peter 3:15b). Therefore, by having your story prepared and practiced, you will know what to say at any point in the event a mission moment occurs. After awhile, you will be so comfortable and confident in sharing your faith that you will likely forget the time you weren’t.
Does this mean you will become so prepared you will never be stumped again? No. You will likely encounter a time when someone asks you a question to which you do not have an answer. Do not feel inferior for not knowing. This is not a bad thing. In fact, this may create an opportunity to later connect with that person because you now have a reason to do so. Ultimately, it may establish a healthy camaraderie in that you are now learning together as a team.
Simply respond this way: “That’s a good question. I don’t know the answer, but I am certainly interested in learning that as well. Can I do a little research and get back to you?” Then, pick up the conversation where you left off before that point. Be sure not to forget to find an answer to the person’s question and get back to them later.
Next time you feel hindered from sharing your faith out of fear that you will become tongue-tied, consider the two above points; but, most of all, realize that the best help you can receive is at the cross. Ask God for His help in conquering this fear. He has help waiting.
In His Word, God tells us, “make up your mind not to worry beforehand how you will defend yourselves. For I will give you words and wisdom that none of your adversaries will be able to resist or contradict” (Luke 21:14-15). Through full reliance on Him and preparation, we can overcome this fear and share our faith actively with boldness.
Provided by Sarah Guldalian, Editor
Coordinator, Equipping to Share