Twelve years ago a simple truth turned my life around – that before you can welcome someone to your church you have to go through the fear barrier of inviting them!
I was working on the Back to Church Sunday project, which developed in 18 countries and has allowed me to conduct over 850 focus groups across multiple denominations and streams. In my research I discovered that, although most of us would like to invite people to church, more than 80 per cent of us have no intention of doing so.
Other research underlines this. The Evangelical Alliance’s ‘21st Century Evangelicals’ discovered almost two in every three Christians feel they have missed a chance to speak to others about God in the past four months, almost half admitting they were ‘just too scared’ to talk about their faith with non-Christians.
My curiosity focused on the gap between desire and intention. Some call it the confidence gap. But I suggest it is the place we meet God.
The reason we have no intention of inviting is fear. That’s what those in the 850 focus groups told me when asked to identify why they don’t invite: fear of rejection, fear of disappointment, fear of failure, fear of embarrassment and more. They have someone in mind God may be prompting them to invite but fear shouts “no”.
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This is taken from an article on The Great Commission Website written by Michael Harvey