Many people ask: “How can I share Christ with my gay neighbor?” I think the following guide applies to how we can share Jesus with just about anyone.
(1) Create a safe setting: this maximizes the chance that others will feel comfortable and trust enough to come again or reciprocate with an invitation to join them.
(2) Offer authentic inclusion. Many people in our world have the wound of exclusion, so an experience of warm welcome is always noticed and valued.
(3) Extend Jesus to people where they are rather than demand they be
somewhere they cannot be. How did we encounter Christ? It may have started at church or from our upbringing, but eventually the Holy Spirit must show up. This occurs not by my power and not in my timing. I can, however, do my part. Invitational verses offered in a natural context work best – like: “Come to ME all who are weary and burdened, and I
will give you rest for your soul.”
(4) Believe beyond biblical ideology
that Jesus “literally” lives inside you. Your primary evangelistic
role is to allow Jesus inside you to reflect
Himself to others.
(5) Nourish others’ spiritual roots of faith rather than chopping at those roots. Avoid leaving people feeling that you see them “outside” the box or that none of their ideas are valid.
(6) See others as whole persons instead of how they fall short of God’s glory. We sometimes deconstruct others into the sin we see in their life. This is judgment. That others are whole persons does
not mean they are not sinful. We are all sinners.
(7) Prove that someone representing “the church” is loving – refreshingly NOT hateful! With regard to LGBT+ folks, you may not agree with their beliefs, but surely it is possible to support some issues that concern them. For instance, we need more Christians who defend gay teens against bullies and work to reduce suicidal risk factors for young gay people.
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