Making Him Known
by Peter Brownhill
Base Director and Founder
at YWAM Perth
When Paul Revere was riding through the thirteen colonies yelling out, “The British are coming! The British are coming!” it was heard and listened to because of a few factors. In his book The Tipping Point, Malcolm Gladwell points out that Paul Revere was exactly the right person to make this proclamation. He was widely networked, known in the various towns and communities since he had travelled this way before and had made it a priority to know the key strategic people in those towns. The other factor that made this proclamation believable was the urgency of his communication. It was a life or death moment for the colonies dependent on how they responded. I like this story as it does turn out to be a tipping point with the colonies. They were able to prepare for the British, get organised and put plans in place for the first battle of the War of Independence.
When we think of making God known there are similar factors. We know that it is the most valuable communication we can ever make. Of course, depending on the response of people to this communication, it determines whether their eternal destination will be with Jesus or not. We carry this weight and knowledge of the gospel all the time. So when we are with people for any length of time or on a continuous basis, we think, “How can I share with them the most important message that they will ever know?”
The other factor is constantly that sense of urgency. They could experience a greater freedom from the guilt of the shameful things that they have done or that have been done to them. They could understand healing and forgiveness and could be set free. We know this and deeply believe it, so we are looking for God-led, Spirit-led opportunities to communicate this sense of urgency of the most liberating message they will ever know.
I have been convinced for a while that the Western world is fast turning to a “no religion” world. “No religion” is now the highest statistically growing religion here in Australia, and it’s similar in Europe. In response to this, and asking God what my part could be in engaging this virus of “no religion” belief, I will restart the School of Evangelism (SOE) here at YWAM Perth.
There was also another factor that prompted me. I was approached by a Norwegian church planter asking if we could form a partnership. He starts churches though cafes and uses this platform of business. He is with a church planting group based in Norway, but they have target cities in mind to start cafes primarily in Europe. In this proposal, I was prompted strongly to say “yes” and felt that the mobilisation tool for Europe could be the School of Evangelism that I could lead. Through the school, we will raise up, mobilise and point these workers towards Europe. One of those options could be this coffee shop approach. I find this so exciting where the potential of these lights of community, relationship and sharing the gospel could happen all over Europe.
Not only this, but what if small YWAM teams took up residence in spirit-led cities in Europe? They meet different ones on the streets, in soccer clinics and cafes where engagement takes place even organically. People are drawn into a relationship or friend circles and, over a few meetings, the gospel is shared. They then believe and they are also discipled. Through them, discipling another group starts to their friends and disciples. The catch phrase is “disciples who make disciples who make disciples…”
I’m sensing a generation coming through that is perfect for an organic approach to evangelism.
People could be followed up in their unchurched state and even do a Bible study, read a passage in their own words and then be asked to put it into action. God’s heart is an outreaching heart. He longs for people to come into the Trinity circle of relationship to enjoy the Father, with Jesus being their older brother who has gone before.
Why not consider hanging out regularly at the same café, take a game and invite people into it? Real life conversations can take place. They may need help, or prayer for sickness. Whatever they need, you could meet their need for help. What about the one who is asking so many questions as to where God is in the midst of the many different worldwide issues? Then you come along and get flooded with their questions. They are so prepared for you to share on the wonderful character and love of God. They hear, and they understand because they are good soil. They then tell their family and friends. In the meantime, you continue to meet them once a week discipling them through the Bible. They can then repeat what they are learning to their friends and family. This is how a movement can start. So ask God and have a go.
This article was published in the
September 2018 edition of Westcoast News.
Read the other articles from this edition: