When it comes to sharing the Gospel around this time of year, how do you engage someone without enraging them? I’m going to give you one super easy way to do just that. Simply ask the question…
“What does Christmas mean to you?”
Jesus asked more questions than anyone else in the Bible (around 300!) He knew that asking great questions was an effective way to get people to open up and share from their hearts.
There’s something about asking good questions that is an act of love. When you ask someone a question and listen to their answer it’s a demonstration that you are interested, not just in someone’s answer, but in them. Asking questions, followed by active listening, is a much needed act of love in our super busy, extremely self-absorbed culture. Dr. Steven Covey once wrote, “Next to physical survival, the greatest need of a human being is psychological survival – to be understood, to be affirmed, to be validated, to be appreciated.”
Asking questions followed by active listening affirms, validates and shows appreciation for others.
The question, “What does Christmas mean to you?” is a great question because it allows someone to share from their heart what this holiday means to them. There’s no wrong answer here (unless they are lying to you of course!) And it provides you an opportunity to get a glimpse into their perspective and life.
Once you listen to them, the most natural question for them to ask you is “What does Christmas mean to you?” and then you can share how the coming of Jesus into this world changed everything for you. You can share the explain how the God of the universe invaded time and space by becoming one of us (the reason we celebrate Christmas globally), that he lived the perfect life we could never live and died the death that we deserve, in our place and for our sins. And, of course, that he rose from the dead three days later, proving that he was God in the flesh. Finally, you can share how this risen Jesus offers us all the ultimate Christmas gift, the gift of eternal life, if we simply put our faith in him.
In addition to asking this great and simple question, here’s another easy way of sharing Jesus with friends and family this Christmas season: give them a copy of my latest book Unlikely Fighter: The Story of How a Fatherless Street Kid Overcame Violence, Chaos and Confusion to Become a Radical Christ Follower. In this book I shared my journey from a terrified and traumatized street kid into a passionate follower of Jesus. The book is real and raw. It is emotionally engaging and entertaining. Most of those I’ve talked to about it have shed tears as they read the stories in it. Unlikely Fighter shares the Gospel without being preachy. But it is straightforward and clear.
Here’s what Pastor Samuel Rodriguez said about my book, “Beyond the brawls, bruises and blood splattered across the pages of this hard-to-put-down-book is the story of a scared, scarred kid on a journey to find his identity.“
I encourage you to get one book for yourself too so you can read it along with them. Then after you both read it, get together for coffee or a meal and talk about it. This will provide a super easy way to talk about the Gospel, because it’s that very message that transformed my entire body-building, street thug, rage-o-holic family members.
However, you choose to share the Gospel with friends and family this Christmas season, do it prayerfully, humbly and confidently. People need Jesus now more than ever and they need the hope that only the Gospel can give them.
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!