Jesus himself drew near and walked with them.
The very word can make us feel apprehensive. I don’t know how to share the gospel. What if I get it wrong? What if the other person rejects me? But evangelizing doesn’t mean we have to explain the entire gospel in one sitting. In the end, it’s really a matter of sharing good news with someone else. It’s something you can do as you take a walk with a friend.
That’s exactly what Jesus did with the disciples on the road to Emmaus. He walked with them. He joined them on their journey and entered into a friendly conversation with them. This innocent, unthreatening act helped them feel comfortable enough to share part of their story with him. It also helped them receive his own words as if they were coming from a friend. By becoming their traveling companion, he helped them trust him so that they could receive his words and let them burn in their hearts.
Most of us don’t walk to too many places anymore, but we can find other ways to connect with people in a friendly, openhearted way. Especially in a world that is becoming increasingly isolated, a little companionship can go a long way. Perhaps by just checking in on an elderly or lonely neighbor, you can establish a relationship that allows your neighbor to open up. Who knows? You could even suggest taking a walk around the neighborhood!
Over time, you may find that you have more in common with this neighbor than you thought. Maybe you have experienced something similar to what they’re going through, and you can offer comfort. Maybe you can share an encouraging word. Or you may end up offering to help with a project around the house. As time goes on, opportunities for sharing your faith will open up—and you’ll feel free to share about your faith. That’s all there is to it—you’re evangelizing!
Is there someone you can reach out to this week? Keep your eyes open for opportunities to accompany them. Because the point with evangelization is not to tell people something they don’t know about God. It’s to listen to them and share your experiences with them. Anyone can do that.
word among us