Updated: Apr 9, 2021
Sometimes God just wants you to take the plunge and make that personal invitation to DBS!
Jeff is a disciple-maker working at a student center in Boulder, Colorado. He wasn't sure when he should invite his atheist friend to DBS. However, he took the plunge, and God blessed his obedience!
There Won't Always Be A "Perfect Moment"
We have lunch everyday with the students at a student housing center. Most of the students are unbelievers so I use mealtimes to enter into intentional conversations with them. One student I engaged in several spiritual conversations with is an atheist student named Nathaniel. During one of these conversations, I told Nathaniel about Jesus. He smiled and said, “No one has ever really told me that—thank you for sharing!” I wasn't used to receiving that reaction from people and wasn’t sure about my next step. I spent the followings months reading Contagious Disciple Making. Once finished, I thought, “Well, if there’s anyone I could start with, it would be Nathaniel!” For several days, God filled me with a desire to invite Nathaniel to Discovery Bible Study with me.
One day, I sat with Nathaniel and his friend at lunch. I realized I couldn't keep on waiting for the perfect moment.
“You know, Nathaniel,” I interjected, “it seems like from our last conversation that you’re interested in God and the Bible. Would you like to read it with me?” He agreed!
What An Atheist Learned From Genesis
We began in Genesis and worked through the Creation to Christ Scripture list. During our first meeting, I asked Nathaniel what the passage said about humanity. He replied, “Since we’re all made in the image of God, no one is more important than another. So, we need to treat everyone special. Rich or poor, everyone must be treated with respect.” In response to the question “What does this passage say about God?”, Nathaniel asked: “If God made people in His image, and God is perfect, then why aren’t people perfect?” Instead of immediately answering his question, I turned it back to him. “What would you say?” “Well,” Nathaniel suggested, “I think that maybe it’s about learning. God wants us to learn from our mistakes and grow.” “I hadn’t thought of that!” I admitted.
How Coaching is Growing Me
Nathaniel is sharing the stories we are reading with his friends and family every week! First, he shared with his sister and, then, with his friend. This week, he expressed uncertainty about sharing due to finals. Ordinarily, I would let it go. However, in my coaching with CDM, I’m learning about the importance of pressing into these questions. “Well, give me a name just for accountability, and let’s see how it goes.” Then, I used another coaching tip about encouraging people to share the story even when they’re busy. “Nathaniel, don’t worry about having a conversation or Zoom call with someone this week to share while you’re swamped with finals. Just send a text to your friend about the story you read and ask him to check it out!” CDM's coaching is helping me push myself to challenge others!
Jeff's story shows us the importance of making "the ask," even amidst uncertainty. Sometimes the fear of rejection keeps us from trying in the first place. However, we can't assume how people will respond. We simply have to ask! In addition, through coaching, Jeff discovered that it's okay to push people! Obedience to God's Word and sharing the story is not an easy task. It's appropriate to challenge people despite excuses and keep them accountable. We want to make obedient disciples of Jesus who share His story!
Premium Podcast: The Power of Personal Invitation
Let's be honest, who hasn't been excited about something and then mass shot out a bunch of shares on social media, hoping someone will share in your enthusiasm? Or to a further extent, have we done the same with God's kingdom work?
In this premium episode, we're talking about how significant it is to directly ask someone something. Jesus made personal invitations and we should do the same as we seek to make disciples and invite people to Discovery Bible Studies. It even applies to mobilizing fellow believers into disciple making. Listen today to learn the power of personal invitation.
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