The theme of this year’s Answers for Women conference is Defend: Ready to Give an Answer. God calls each of His beloved children to share the hope He has given us through Jesus (1 Peter 3:15). Yet how can we share this hope when so many are questioning the very foundation of our faith and false stories abound about Christianity? How would you answer a friend asking if Jesus truly resurrected? How do you share the hope of heaven among all the stories of visits to heaven? Is the Bible even God’s true Word? Should we be involved in things like holy yoga and contemplative prayer? We want to equip you with answers.
Joining Amy Spreeman, Bodie Hodge, Erin Benziger, and Marcia Montenegro at this year’s conference is Grace Mally. Grace and her family have a multi-faceted ministry called Tomorrow’s Forefathers. They provide discipleship and training for young women and men through a variety of resources. Grace has been very active in Bright Lights, their ministry to young women. They sponsor groups that meet all over the country to “give practical training in godliness, to encourage young women to live the years of their youth fully for Christ, to provide edifying fellowship and accountability, and to minister to a group which will minister to others.” Grace is also very active in sharing the gospel, and her presentation for Defend will focus on this topic. Here’s what she had to say about it:
“This world is pretty messed up,” a teenage guy, Ryan, commented to me recently.
“I agree. Why do you think so?” I asked.
“All these companies producing plastic and causing so much pollution . . . cutting down trees,” he complained.
“What do you think is the bigger problem: pollution in the air or evil in people’s hearts?” I asked him.
“Well, I think if the air was better, then people could think straight, and they wouldn’t be so evil,” Ryan replied.
Ryan said he was confirmed Lutheran, but he didn’t seem to know what to believe now.
“I don’t think God is a he or she, but some kind of energy . . . or maybe a force in the middle of the earth,” he told me.
“You know,” I replied, “you could dream all day long about ‘what might be,’ but the only way we could really know the truth is if God, the Creator, revealed Himself to us.”
That led into a good talk about the Bible. After about 20 minutes, I mentioned I should probably go. But Ryan sat down on his skateboard and kept talking, making it clear he didn’t want the conversation to end.
This conversation took place on the bike trail near our house. Even though I was a total stranger to Ryan, I was glad he was interested enough to openly share his thoughts and perspectives. That night I emailed him a link to Ray Comfort’s Atheist Delusion. He responded, saying he’d love to get together to talk more. I hope to connect him with another Christian guy.
It was such a joy to see the Lord orchestrate this encounter. But discussions like this don’t simply fall into our lap; we typically have to do a little initiating. This conversation started because I gave Ryan and his friend an “Incredible Creature Card” as I passed them on my bike. Ryan and his friend were chatty, and the conversation took off from there. (“Incredible Creature Cards” are colorful cards that talk about God’s design in the animal kingdom and conclude with a few words about our Creator and a Scripture verse about salvation.)
It is easy for us, as Christians, to hope unbelievers will ask us questions so we don’t have to take the initiative to bring up spiritual things with them. We fear that if we try to witness, we’ll either offend them and push them away or we’ll look foolish and be rejected. Our problem is that we forget one important factor: we are not alone in this work! We have a powerful God who is coordinating amazing encounters for His glory. He goes ahead of us. He is working in people’s hearts, and He is able to cause our paths to intersect at the perfect time.
We only have a few short days in which we can engage in the battle for souls. If we refuse to speak, we’ll miss out on one of the biggest blessings of the Christian life: testifying of our Savior. It doesn’t have to be awkward. We can engage people in a winsome, natural way—not in a stiff or pushy way. The ideas and tools are endless!
With a little practice and a few simple questions to help you transition from natural to spiritual topics in conversations, witnessing isn’t nearly as difficult as many imagine. The pressure is not on us to make converts; only the Holy Spirit can do that! Our job is merely to have a friendly discussion with unbelievers, with love and boldness. May the Lord give us His love for souls and a faith in His power, which will drive us to action and keep us from making excuses!
I have known Grace for several years, and she is an incredible woman with a heart for helping others know Christ. Though sharing the gospel is intimidating for most of us, Grace will show us that it doesn’t have to be.
Register today to take advantage of the early-bird price (ends February 1), and remember the price includes lunch on Saturday, free admission to the Creation Museum and Ark Encounter for the attendee, and 20% off admission for accompanying spouse and children. This year’s conference will be held at Florence Baptist Church (20 minutes from the Creation Museum and Ark Encounter) because we’ve outgrown Legacy Hall at the Creation Museum—what a wonderful problem! Be sure to download the bulletin insert on the event website to advertise the conference at your church.
Keep fighting the good fight of the faith!