This blog entry is by guest blogger Steve Ogne, church planter coach and consultant with CRM. Steve and I worked together for a decade and collaborated on several projects together, including The Church Planter’s Toolkit. Steve’s most recent publication is TransforMissional Coaching: Empowering Leaders in a Changing Ministry World.
The easiest way to start spiritual conversation with a pre-Christian is to speak first about your relationship with God in natural or comfortable ways. Examples: I’m really thankful to God for…. I’m really experiencing a need for God’s wisdom with my teenager…. I feel close to God when I’m out here in nature….
Then follow with a question: What are you thankful to God for? Where do you need God’s help? When do you feel close to God? By opening the conversation yourself, you’ve given the person you’re talking with an idea of the type of response they might make, allowing them to make a similar statement.
Sometimes people honestly have no idea how to answer a spiritual question. Modeling your own response first makes it easier for them by giving them a category for how to respond. Otherwise, if we start with the question, we may be asking something they simply have no idea how to answer. This approach makes it easier for them to respond with whatever thoughts they have about God.
Bonus questions: Here are a few more ways you might start a spiritual conversation:
- One thing I’d like to ask God about is….
- Sometimes I’m really ticked at God when….