The following is a fairly standard strategy employed by those involved in Church Planting Movements.
- Walk around a community you want to evangelise, praying as you go. Observe. Learn about the community. Talk to people.
- If appropriate, tell those you talk to that you are praying for the community and ask what they think you should pray for.
- Then say something like, “While I am at it, what could I pray for for you?” Another approach is to say, “If God was going to do a miracle for you, what would you want it to be?”
Consider the following advantages:
- Prayer is always good. Who knows how God might answer?
- You are simply offering something good to the community and to the individual. You are not asking for anything or pressuring them into anything. You are simply willing to serve. In other words, it is positive.
- The chances are good that you will learn a lot about the community.
- There is a very good chance that it might begin a spiritual conversation and it prompts the other person to share a significant need.
- If God answers your prayer for the person (and he is likely to, given that He wants people saved) he/she will have had an encounter with God.
Of course, evangelism requires more but, if this approach begins a relationship and leads to spiritual conversations and/or experiences of God, you can then talk about the gospel and continue to have contact so as to nurture further growth.
What do you think? is it worth a try? What’s the worst that could happen?