Growing up, I didn’t see a need for God in my life. I believed that religion was for weak people who needed something bigger than themselves to give them a sense of direction in their lives. I knew what I wanted to do, and I was determined to give my best effort to get there. My view of faith was so tainted by hypocrisy that the world preaches that simply hearing the name of Jesus became something that sounded unauthentic and repulsive.
Nevertheless, by moving here to the Bay Area, God put me in the right place and time (Acts 17:26-27) for me to learn how to build a real relationship with Him.
 But how can they call on him to save them unless they believe in him? And how can they believe in him if they have never heard about him? And how can they hear about him unless someone tells them?
Romans 10:14 NLT
Like this Scripture teaches, it’s impossible for anyone to build a real relationship with God unless they have someone around them to tell them about who God is.
Jesus had the best relational skills than anyone could ever have. His love and care allowed him to connect with a wide range of people, from prostitutes, murders, to sick people. He always made a difference in people’s lives by building their faith. He neither accused nor threatened, but He found a profound way to connect with those who seemed unreachable.
Let’s look at Jesus’ example and imitate his faith to change the way we evangelize the world. A good example is his very first interaction with Paul.
1. Understanding The Need – Awareness
 “I used to believe that I ought to do everything I could to oppose the very name of Jesus the Nazarene.  Indeed, I did just that in Jerusalem. Authorized by the leading priests, I caused many believers there to be sent to prison. And I cast my vote against them when they were condemned to death.  Many times I had them punished in the synagogues to get them to curse Jesus. I was so violently opposed to them that I even chased them down in foreign cities.  “One day I was on such a mission to Damascus, armed with the authority and commission of the leading priests.  About noon, Your Majesty, as I was on the road, a light from heaven brighter than the sun shone down on me and my companions.
Acts 26:9-13,16-18 NLT
Paul describes himself here as someone who was noticeably opposed to Jesus and Christianity. He strongly opposed the faith and violently persecuted anyone who believed. Why would Jesus pick such a man to reach out to? Because He understood what was at the root of Paul’s actions: unbelief (1 Timothy 1:12-13)
 The world’s sin is that it refuses to believe in me.
John 16:9 NLT
First step of changing the world is understanding what it needs to be saved from.
We live in a country where over 1,000 people divorce daily, where over 1.9 million people are currently incarcerated, +6,000 homicides happened this year alone, and +15,000 people committed suicide this year.
It doesn’t matter how people portray themselves, everyone is in desperate need of faith.
What are the needs of those around us?
What excuses do we make to not have to do anything about it?
How can we raise our awareness?
2. Taking Genuine Interest – Asking The Right Question
 We all fell down, and I heard a voice saying to me in Aramaic, ‘Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me? It is useless for you to fight against my will.’
Acts 26:14 NLT
Jesus chose to ask Paul a poignant question: “Why”?
Losing my mother was one of the most painful experiences in my life. Even though I avoided the topic like the plague every time it was brought up, I was in desperate need to be asked the “hard question”.
In order to help someone develop genuine faith, we need to understand their hearts and care enough to ask relevant questions that most chose to ignore.
 The purposes of a person’s heart are deep waters, but one who has insight draws them out.
Proverbs 20:5 NIV
Each one of us have things in our hearts that need to be drawn out, a person who works to understand is able to do this for others.
Who do we know needs to be drawn out?
What question do we avoid asking others?
How can we choose to care for someone today?
3. Sharing Your Life – Making Relational Attachment
 “‘Who are you, lord?’ I asked. “And the Lord replied, ‘I am Jesus, the one you are persecuting.
Acts 26:15 NLT
Jesus chose to reveal himself to Paul and let him know who He was. In order to be able to make deep connections with others, we need not only to ask them relevant questions, but to choose to vulnerably reveal who we are.
 We loved you so much that we shared with you not only God’s Good News but our own lives, too.
1 Thessalonians 2:8 NLT
We live in a high tech and fast pace world where making connections with strangers through social media and other resources is becoming the norm. Evangelism is more than clicking and emailing out an invite, it’s about transforming someone’s life by sharing ours.
How can we impact others by sharing our lives?
What parts of our lives do we have the hardest time sharing?
Who can we share our lives with today?
4. Inspiring Others – Giving People Vision
 Now get to your feet! For I have appeared to you to appoint you as my servant and witness. Tell people that you have seen me, and tell them what I will show you in the future.  And I will rescue you from both your own people and the Gentiles. Yes, I am sending you to the Gentiles  to open their eyes, so they may turn from darkness to light and from the power of Satan to God. Then they will receive forgiveness for their sins and be given a place among God’s people, who are set apart by faith in me.’
Acts 26:16-18 NLT
Inspiring faith is all about helping others understand and believe who they can become once they build a strong relationship with God. The biggest difference anyone can make is helping someone else’s life to grow. Evangelizing the world is opening people’s eyes to the destiny God has for them so they can do so with others.
Who has God put in our lives to change?
What impact could they have on others?
How can I choose to be evangelistic today?
The world around us is in desperate need of faith. God can use us to make a difference in others’ lives if we chose to understand, care, share and inspire people about the importance of learning how to build a real relationship with God.
Changing the world starts with one person at a time.