In our last conversation, I challenged you to begin asking God for PASSION to share Jesus with others. Here we are a week later, and I’m afraid to ask, but… how’d it go?
If you’re anything like me, you’re glad we’re not sitting face to face looking each other in the eye. Trust me, I know that feeling all too well.
I find it funny that we can read or hear something that really sets a fire under our seats yet after two or three days of that initial jolt of holy adrenaline, the ambition begins to wane, that fire starts to cool down, and before we know it, we’re right back where we started. Perhaps funny isn’t the best word to use here. It’s more frustrating than anything. It’s frustrating, it’s demoralizing, and it’s really sad.
If it’s any consolation though, you’re not alone. You and I and a million other folks just like us do our best to love Jesus with everything we’ve got, yet we still drop the ball more times than we care to admit. So what’s the solution?
If you look back at our last conversation, I challenged you to pray for PASSION, and then I told you that over the next several weeks we’ll break down the word PASSION into a memorable sequence of simple actions, a system, to help you cultivate a PASSION for sharing Jesus with others.
In the book Atomic Habits by James Clear, Clear explains that most people fail to achieve their goals, not because the goal is faulty, but because the system to achieve that goal is a broken system. More attention toward building effective systems, rather than focusing strictly on goals, sets people up to realize more of the goals they long to achieve.
While the system I’m offering here is certainly no “silver bullet” to rectify all that’s broken in the evangelism strategies of contemporary Christendom, the PASSION evangelism system is designed to lead you to a lifestyle of habitual witnessing and to help you actually have fun doing it.
To kick things off, the letter P for our purposes stands for PRAY. The first step in the PASSION system is to PRAY for those who are far from God. Simple enough right?
Now before you go wild praying for all the people you saw at the homeless shelter, all the inmates you know who just went back to jail and all the relatives you have that post all that crazy stuff online, I want you to pause for a moment.
To be as intentional and efficient as possible, we need first to consider who God is sending our way. To do that, I want you close your eyes for 15-30 seconds and just think about the first five people who come to mind who are really close to God and have an obvious, vibrant relationship with Jesus. While your eyes are closed, feel free to say a quick prayer thanking God for those five in your life.
Ok, you got your five in mind?
Now, I want you to do the same thing again, only this time, think of the first five who come to mind who are really far from God. (Notice I didn’t use the word lost. There’s a reason for that, but that’s for another discussion down the road.) While your eyes are closed, say a quick prayer for them. Fo ahead and pray that God would miraculously lead the five furthest from God to be just as on fire for Jesus as the five who are closest to God.
So go ahead…30 seconds…five people really far from God… GO.
Alright, now that you’ve got those five, they are your starting point. For the next seven to ten days, I want you to pray specifically for those five people every morning when you’re brushing your teeth. You may even want to put a sticky note with their names on it on your bathroom mirror just to remind you to pray for them.
The goal here is to cultivate a habit of praying for those far from God by name every morning asking God to begin His work to save them.
As a side note, you don’t need to worry about rushing right into a Gospel presentation like the Romans Road the next time you see them. All we’re really going for at this point is to just pray daily for these people to be saved and to see how God begins to work. Sound good?
So, step one in our PASSION system is to PRAY for those who are far from God.
Go ahead and begin praying today, and next week we’ll assess how God’s answering our prayers, and then we’ll move on to the next step in cultivating a PASSION for sharing Jesus with others.
PRAY for those who are far from God.