“You can never win your enemies to Christ, only your friends.” -Rick Warren
Erwin McManus is in the middle of a series at his church called “The Truth Between Us“. It is a very interesting series. Instead of focusing on the differences between Christianity and other beliefs (i.e. atheism, Buddhism, Hinduism, Scientology, etc.), he is focusing on the things that are similar between us.
One thing I have noticed is that most Christians are not ok with people who believe differently than we do. We become judgmental, thinking that they will never get it, or we become indifferent and just ignore them completely. The result of us being closed off to people who believe differently than us ends up being us missing endless opportunities to strengthen our faith, lead people to Christ, and make a bigger difference for God.
I believe there is only one way to Heaven and to God and that is through Jesus. However, if someone believes differently than me or if someone questions my beliefs, I am not just going to stop the conversation between us and cut them off. I believe what Rick Warren said, “You can never win your enemies to Christ, only your friends.”
I believe we can all make a much bigger difference for God if we focus on the truths and commonalities between us rather than the differences.
The Bible says we’re all going through the same tests and trials. Everyone. Everyone is looking for purpose. Everyone is asking the questions: Is there a God? What am I hear for? What is the purpose of life? Why is there so much suffering in the world? Is God bad? Does God cause suffering? Everyone wants a better life, a better marriage, and to be doing what they are supposed to be doing.
As Christians, we have the answers to these questions, but if we aren’t willing to meet people where they are at, we will never be a part of what God is doing in their lives.
I have just a few questions for you:
What if we started looking for the things we have in common with people instead of our differences?
What if we stopped trying to relate to people simply on our ideology?
What if people knew it was safe to belong to our church or to be our friend before they believe what we believe?
What if we showed people the love of God rather than our judgement?
What if we were as patient with people as God is?
Personally, I think we’d be a lot more effective in leading our world to Christ.