The recent surge in highly progressive ideals places significant pressure on many Christians as they strive to share their faith with friends and family. For example it's important not to enable someone's gender dysphoria by unquestioningly affirming their beliefs about reality. Similarly, taking an overly confrontational approach when discussing the truth with someone genuinely struggling can be counterproductive. Striking a balance is crucial – we shouldn't sacrifice objective reality for the sake of love, nor should we forfeit kindness while addressing differing perspectives.
Many of us have family and friends who adhere to secular views on gender, sexuality, and morals, regardless of their religious stance. In our efforts to guide them towards understanding, sometimes our enthusiasm inadvertently leads to defensiveness and retreat. This highlights the significance of interpreting "he who wins souls is wise" (Proverbs 11:30) within Scripture.
Engaging in conversations about faith with friends and family should commence with assessing their openness (Matthew 7:6). We must be careful to adapt our appraoch based upon their level of receptivity. Some family or friend will be open and we can share, others may be resistant and will require patience.
Recognizing the spiritual reality we exist in is also vital. The Bible teaches that Satan blinds the minds of unbelievers to withhold the truth (2 Cor. 4:4). Thus, we should lay a groundwork of prayer before discussing faith matters with them.
Establishing a foundation rooted in Christ-like behavior and endurance is pivotal. This doesn't imply timidly apologizing for God, but rather employing wisdom and discernment in our interactions. This ultimately underscores the fact that those aware of our Christian identity are observing us closely. Therefore, it becomes imperative to lead a righteous life, allowing our sincerity to shine through, which in turn paves the way for them to be receptive to our message.
Before embarking upon lengthy discussions, ensure you're well-versed in the Bible and the rationale behind your beliefs. Scripture urges us to study to become approved by God as competent interpreters of the Word of Truth (2 Tim. 2:15). Seek guidance from the Holy Spirit to maintain a kind demeanor and provide thoughtful responses to their inquiries.
Finally, avoiding the temptation to compromise in order to appease friends and family is a crucial stance. While some believers have strayed, our dedication to Christ should stay unshaken. Reflect on Jesus' sacrifice on the Cross, transcending any human act. Though relationships hold significance, they can't match Christ's profound love and loyalty. As we endeavor to capture the hearts of our loved ones, let's firmly comprehend Jesus' sacrifice and His unmatched role in our lives.
Written by: Kyle Bailey, D.Min.