By guest blogger Dr. Dietrich Schindler
Originally meant to help soldiers open cans and clean guns, the Swiss army knife has become the tool of choice for many of us. We love its versatility, compactness, multi-functional options – not to mention its shininess.
What Swiss soldiers needed in the late 19th century, 21st-century believers need in helping them winsomely communicate the gospel to secular people. MyLife-Workshop is the Swiss Army knife of kingdom-advancing courses designed to touch the heart of unbelievers with the gospel.
Evangelism for the Rest of Us
Research has shown that only five percent of Christians will ever lead a non-Christian to faith in Christ (Norton and Engel, What’s Gone Wrong with the Harvest?). The vast majority of the 95% of believers are fraught with low-level self-esteem and high-level anxiety–even fear–when confronted with sharing their faith. What these people need is hope. They need an easy and enjoyable way of sharing Christ with their non-Christian friends. MyLife-Workshop is just that. It is a six-unit course designed for those of us who do not have the gift of evangelism, but long for our friends to know Christ and His saving grace.
MyLife-Workshop centers around six metaphors that take people on a journey of self-discovery that leads to discovering what God has done for them in Christ. Originally conceived in Germany, this study has been conducted over 1,000 times in fifteen European countries with positive results. Now it’s time to introduce MyLife-Workshop to the English-speaking world.
What Makes MyLife-Workshop Different?
Rather than beginning with doctrine, in which most non-Christians are not very interested, MyLife-Workshop begins with the life of the participant, tapping into their own stories to see how God may be at work there. MyLife-Workshop connects people with one another heart-to-heart, and this self-discovery bridges naturally into the gospel.
Participants begin to plot their lives on their personal map and develop that map from unit to unit. They craft something very personal that documents their lives as well as the gospel emerging out of their lives. Postmoderns love this approach because it is developmental and open-ended. It’s not prepackaged material that provides answers to questions that haven’t been asked.
MyLife-Workshop thrives in community. Participants are seated around tables of four to five per table. (One could have fifty people in attendance, but they are always broken down into groups of four or five). After some self-reflection, they will share with one another some of the things that they have been thinking about. Often people come back to the next unit because of the quality of sharing they had experienced around their table group.
MyLife-Workshop is an Easy-to-Use Tool
And like a Swiss army knife, MyLife-Workshop is easy to use. If you can push power point, you can facilitate the course. This means you do not have to be a gifted presenter or theologian, or evangelist. As a facilitator, you help people to discover truths for themselves that lead them to understand and often embrace the gospel. As you can imagine, MyLife-Workshop can be used as a powerful tool especially for church planters.
Try out MyLife-Workshop – a fresh and fun approach at making the gospel relevant to secular people. For more on how you can access MyLife-Workshop and experience the harvest that Jesus envisioned, visit the website: mylifeworkshop.org.
About the Author
Dr. Dietrich Schindler is also the author of The Jesus Model: Planting Churches the Jesus Way, Profound: Twelve Questions that will Grab your Heart and Not Let Go, and his most recent work, Contrarian Church Planting: Advancing the Kingdom of God through the Starting of New Churches – Differently, will be published this year.
The Discipleship Difference- This book lays out an intentional, holistic, and relational approach to discipleship that is individualized to meet each person wherever they are. Available in English and in Spanish.
Guide for Discipling- We created this resource to help people grow closer to God and to one another. Using short scriptural teachings coupled with good questions, this guide will help you and those you are discipling identify areas for growth and take the next best step on your journey with Jesus. Our guides can be used with any denomination, however, recognizing that it is helpful to work within the traditions and voice of the denomination you belong to, we have partnered with key denominational leaders to offer customized guides. Vineyard Discipleship Guides, A Discipleship Guide for Lutherans, and Discipleship for Episcopalians are available for download on our website or can be found in print on Amazon.com.