The sermon from yesterday was on the story of the Philip sharing the Gospel with the Ethiopian man from Acts 8:26-40. The story is a simple reminder of what every person needs at some point in their live, to have a person share the Gospel and make sense of the story of Jesus to them. In the sermon I shared five core steps we as individuals and as a church can take to develop and nurture an evangelistic culture. Those steps were:
- Purposeful prayer
- Intentional relationships
- Loving engagement
- Gospel conversations
- Celebrating conversions
I intend to write posts over the next week or so for the purpose of sharing some ideas we can implement individually and corporately with the hopes of greater intentionality in our evangelistic fervor and efforts. This first post will share some ideas for Purposeful prayer as we seek to lift up those who need Jesus and to pray Biblically for evangelism.
And he said to them, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few. Therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest. (Luke 10:2, ESV)
And now, Lord, look upon their threats and grant to your servants to continue to speak your word with all boldness, while you stretch out your hand to heal, and signs and wonders are performed through the name of your holy servant Jesus.” And when they had prayed, the place in which they were gathered together was shaken, and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and continued to speak the word of God with boldness. (Acts 4:29–31, ESV)
- Who’s Your One Prayer Guide – Click this link to download a 30 day prayer guide to lead you as you pray for your One.
*Please note – Who’s Your One is part of our evangelism strategy, challenging each of us to focus on “Your One”, an individual who needs Christ whom you will commit to pray for and seek to share the Gospel with. Each of these posts will have ideas related to Who’s your One.
- Who’s your One reminder – Put a reminder in a place where you see it often, and every time you look at it pause for a second to lift up your One. We have green #1’s at Genesis for this, or you can use something like a sticker, a key chain, or a coin in your pocket.
- Keep a prayer journal – Grab a notebook or journal to use in your devotional and prayer life. Include the names of family, friends, co-workers, and neighbors who need to trust in Jesus.
- Pray Luke 10:2 everywhere – Jesus is clear that part of our prayer as it relates to evangelism is to ask the Lord of the harvest to raise up harvesters, or in other words, asking God to raise up people who love Jesus and are willing to plant the seeds of the Gospel in a city, neighborhood, region.
- Pray for the Lost on first Sunday of the month – Our Prayer Team has scheduled an event at the church office on the first Sunday of each month, 4 PM specifically so we will lift up those who need Jesus. Add this to your schedule and join us.
- Friday Morning Prayer – We also have a corporate prayer gathering each week on Friday morning, 6:45 AM at the Genesis Church Office where we pray for our church, city, and neighbors. We lift up our weekend events and the Sunday service as well as praying for ministries, needs, and people.
- Prayer Walking – Take a walk this Summer, but use your walk to pray for people in your neighborhood. Involve your family, others from our church living in your neighborhood, and maybe even your Community Group. As you walk pause at each residence, lifting up your neighbors, by name when you can. Pray for them to hear of Jesus and for boldness to share Christ on your block.
- Neighborhood notebook – Create a notebook or Excel file for the purpose of entering the names and any other information about your neighbors as you learn it. As you meet neighbors, jot down names, kids names, family information, job, or anything else you learn of them. Then, be intentional about getting to know neighbors and capturing this sort of info. In the long term this will both help you to pray for them and will also help you remember important stuff so you can love your neighbors well.
- Pray for neighborhoods – Each week this Summer at Genesis we are praying over a specific Eureka neighborhood. We hope this is more than just a quick Sunday prayer, but rather, an emphasis for the whole week. This week we are praying for the Hilltop neighborhood. We are including the weekly emphasis on the Family Worship Sheet or you can jot it down when we pray on Sunday.
- Monthly day of prayer for neighbors and those who need Jesus – Schedule a day each month for the sole purpose of setting aside time to pray for your neighbors and others who need Jesus. Just put it in your calendar, on a specific date each month or a day of a specific week (like the fourth Tuesday of each month). Have your Google calendar remind you a day or two in advance so you can plan your day each month with time set aside for your prayer.
- Learn to ask how you can pray, and then pray – We all have conversations with people who share something of their struggle. Maybe they are in a dark place, have a health crisis, or are struggling in a relationship. And they just share it with you as a part of life. A simple way to connect things to Jesus is to ask these people this question, “How can I lift you up in prayer in the next few days?” Often they will share, which may give opportunity for further discussion. But no matter what, be sure to keep your word and actually pray for the person and their situation.
The beginning point for our developing a culture of evangelism in our prayer life. As we desperately ask the Lord of the Harvest to raise up seed planters, and we pray for boldness, we can expect God to be at work in our lives, among our neighbors, and in our city. These are just a few ideas, and my hope is that it just begins the conversation. So join the dialogue using the comments to share ideas you might have. Thanks, and God bless.