The world is an interesting place. It is filled with souls that yearn for God, yet constantly stuff finite objects into an infinite hole in their heart. They subconsciously yearn for God's love, yet don't know where to find it. It will even seem that when you suggest the possibility of God, they shut down.
How do we lead others to Christ without burning down our friendships with non believers? There are many countless ways, but this post will focus on two.
Point number one: Befriend them. You cannot suggest fixes to problems you don't understand all aspects of. If you have a classmate who is constantly bashing the Catholic faith, don't go Rambo on them and demand they respect the Church. Get to know them. More than likely, you have some form of concern for this person's soul, or else you just wouldn't care, frankly. So, if you get to know this person as a child of God. There is something broken in every soul that is the cause of a hatred or lashing out or general life of dependency of sin. But you cannot pass judgement on a person at all. You can judge their sins as harmful to the life of their soul and to their relationship with God, though. Yet it is easier to understand the behavior when you understand the environment.
The blatantly homosexual guy at work? Could have been abused by his dad as a child. The girl who constantly snaps at you everyday in your grocery line? Maybe her boyfriend recently broke up with her and she just feels like a pile of trash. Each of these people is loved by their divine creator, who just wants them to choose Heaven and Him. They won't choose Heaven and Christ if the only example of a Christian just constantly tells them how much they are sinning.
Point number two: Make sure you have what you're trying to give away. If you walked up to your classmates and said, "Hey guys! Doughnut day! Doughnuts for everyone!" then they would probably get pretty excited. I mean, it's free food, it's college, it's common sense. But if you then said, "But I don't have the doughnuts! Don't look at me! Go get them yourself!" they would probably sigh, shake their heads, and, depending on if it's finals week or not, chase you out of the classroom with torches and pitch forks
But if that's the reactions to food, imagine what the reaction is to the claim that you know the Bread of Life. If you preach Christianity to people in your life, but your life says the opposite, don't expect to win souls.
To claim solidarity with the Christian life, but then act hypocritical turns SO many people away. If you say Catholics should act like Catholics, but use contraception in your sexual activity, your life is a contradiction. And people see that. And then they don't listen to your defense of the faith because you're already justifying your own sins.
So, basically, be a good friend and be a holy Christian. It's the Easter season. It's time for a fresh start. It's time to turn our whole lives over to the Lord. Not just the parts we want to give Him....give Him your all. I've heard He runs a pretty decent return rate.
'Fire of the Spirit' Teen blog is run by Henry B. To find more information about this blog, go here