I'm Not Good at Talking With Strangers!

12 "For the eyes of the Lord are over the righteous, and his ears are open unto their prayers: but the face of the Lord is against them that do evil.

13 And who is he that will harm you, if ye be followers of that which is good?

14 But and if ye suffer for righteousness' sake, happy are ye: and be not afraid of their terror, neither be troubled;

15 But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear:” 

1 Peter 3:12-15  KJV

After reading verse 15 you might be thinking: “Boy, that’s me, “with meekness and fear,” I’m not too good at talking with others. But maybe you are actually just the opposite. You like talking with others, especially when it comes to sharing your faith. But this passage may be dealing more with our attitude in doing so. We should do it with a humble spirit, and in many situations, it pays to choose our words wisely. I believe the word “fear” in verse 15 may be alluding to that.


Sometimes people question us about our faith in order to persecute us for our faith, and are in opposition to it. But sometimes they ask because they genuinely want to know. In either case we need to be ready to give a proper response. And in either case we can take comfort in verse 13 and 14: “For the eyes of the Lord are over the righteous, and his ears are open unto their prayers: … And who is he that will harm you, if ye be followers of that which is good?”


I believe 2 Timothy 2:24-26 also makes it clear what our attitude should be going in:

“And the servant of the Lord must not strive; but be gentle unto all men, apt to teach, patient,

In meekness instructing those that oppose themselves; if God peradventure will give them repentance to the acknowledging of the truth;

And that they may recover themselves out of the snare of the devil, who are taken captive by him at his will.”


Please recognize who the enemy is in this passage. It is not the lost person. The enemy is Satan. Please keep that in mind when dealing with someone who has swallowed one of the devil’s lies. We need to come along side of them, be their friend, not strive against them, but be gentle and patient as v.24 says, and in meekness instruct them, with the hope they can recover themselves from the snare of Satan who has taken them captive. That won’t happen by arrogantly trying to prove them wrong. Just remember, Satan is the enemy, the cult member, or evolutionist, etc. is the victim. We need to try to help them.


Whether you are actually very good at speaking with others in witnessing situations, or maybe tremble at the thought of it, I want to help. In fact, for a number of years I used a little acrostic using that word: “help.”


Home Visitation

I believe I heard Dr. Wally Beebe use this illustration many years ago. He said write this down on an index card and carry it with, until you become comfortable enough in doing this on your own. I don’t think he would mind if I share this with you, since he is in heaven today. Try it, it works.


H – home

E- environment, education, employment

L – loved ones

P – plan, Person


H – home

You could say: “You have a lovely home.” Wait, what if their home isn’t lovely? No problem. You just ask them how long they have lived there. Go to the next letter in our acrostic. Go to the “E.”


E – environment, education, employment

(Environment)

You can do the usual and say something about the weather.

(Education)

Next if they have children, ask them what grades their children are in, or where they go to school.

(Employment)

Ask them what type of work they do, or where their place of employment is. Go to the “L.”


L – loved ones

Say something nice about their children, or look for pictures of their loved ones, and asked them about them. People tend to relax a little when you take an interest in their loved ones. (Don’t fake it.)


P – plan, Person

Now is when you make a transition into the plan of salvation. If you don’t intentionally do this, you can talk for two hours and not have time to get to the real reason you are there, their eternal destiny. Dr. Beebe said people will talk about the hogs, the frogs, the dogs, and the logs, and never get to the plan.

More important than the plan (of salvation), is the Person of the plan. Please remember that is the most important issue. You want to introduce them to the Lord Jesus Christ, and help them to enter into a personal relationship with Him.