What happens if you give your ready answer for the hope you have in Christ and someone actually responds and wants to know more? Now what? Perhaps you find yourself encountering these fears:
Fear #1: I don’t know enough. Let me offer you some comfort… if you know Christ, you know enough. I think the real fear here is people saying they don’t know everything. Listen, no human
knows everything about God on this side of heaven. God is way out of our league (and I’m good with that)!
We need to draw this distinction: You don’t have to know everything, you just have to know enough. And if you know Christ, you know enough to get started with life after the ready answer!
Fear #2: If people want to know more and I say, “I don’t know,” people will think I’m a fraud. Well, maybe. Or they might think you’re being authentic and genuine.. It’s OK to say, “I don’t know,” as long as it doesn’t become an excuse to stagnate in our growth. If we give up learning and growing because we can’t know it all, then we’re not really being disciples of Christ. It’s when we pretend to know it all that we’re eventually exposed as frauds. What’s the solution?
Be yourself! Admit your limitations and struggles… but at the same time demonstrate your resolve to continue learning and growing.
Fear #3: I don’t know how to continue growing myself, much less how to help someone else. Let’s deal with this fear by looking at the life of a great evangelist. Jesus meets her at a well in John 4. Here are two things she does well (no pun intended!):
1. She keeps the focus on Jesus. At no point does she claim to have special status or knowledge. She recognizes (and admits) her limitations (e.g., John 4:29 “Come and see a man who has told me everything I’ve done!). She wasn’t worried about being considered a fraud, she was genuine, even though that could’ve worked against her!
2. She invites people to Jesus. She didn’t take a crash course on apologetics. She didn’t wait until she could grasp all the intricacies of doctrine, she simply invited people to Jesus. And many believed. Why? See for yourself:
“So he stayed for two days, long enough for many more to hear his message and believe. Then they said to the woman, “Now we believe, not just because of what you told us, but because we have heard him ourselves. Now we know that he is indeed the Savior of the world.”” (John 4:40–42 NLT)
They key here is to recognize that we’re not trying to get people to follow us, we’re wanting them to follow Christ. Getting people to hear you may turn their attention. Getting people to hear Christ will turn their hearts and change their lives for eternity.
So, how will you keep the focus on Christ? And how will you help them to hear from Christ himself?