When I was a little girl, I can remember that no matter what event it was, I’d hide behind my parents, and wait until it was over. Every time. This reminds me of what we Christians end up doing when it comes to the topic of community. A lot of us tend to hide away, for a lot of different reasons. Maybe it’s due to the worry that if we express our opinions openly with friends, we will lose said friends. Another issue is that a lot of us simply don’t know how to go about it. Truth is, it can be hard to start off a conversation about God, for many reasons. I’m not going to deny this, but that’s what this article is all about! Are you having trouble taking that first jump? Here are some helpful tips on how you can take that leap of faith.
Conversation, Not Confrontation
Sometimes, the first thing so many of us think to do is to immediately repeat a Bible quote word for word to a questioning non-believer. Now, this way of thinking isn’t necessarily a bad way of going about it, but this can at times overwhelm a person from the very beginning. Instead of diving straight in with the topic, try a leading conversation. Don’t force your beliefs, just make your views known, like talking about your youth events, or volunteer serving you did on the weekend. These things will make people curious, thus a segway into your conversation. Remember to not be confrontational, or condemn a person for how they feel. That’s definitely not how you bring someone to an open environment; that leaves them closed off.
Open Heart, Open Mind
Another thing many of us tend to do is keep our faith a secret! For instance: if you’re at lunch and you pray on your way down so you don’t make a “scene” in front of people. Truth is, a lot of us really want to fit in, especially when it comes to high school. It’s important that in these situations you remember one thing: you were created to stand out! You were never meant to fit tightly within the rest of the broken world, as Christians we stand as the difference. Don’t be afraid to show yourself for who you are in your faith. If you want to pray, pray openly and honestly. It isn’t weird or embarrassing, trust me.
Be The Difference
Finally, be the true difference! This planet would be so boring if we all looked and acted the same. If you ever see something that you know isn’t okay, be sure to stand your ground and be firm about it. It’s critical that you do because to most people’s surprise, you’re probably the first to do so. Most of the time people decide to not speak out against things they deem wrong because they assume someone else will get to it. This starts a never ending cycle of things not getting addressed, and it’s not healthy. If you ever hear someone demeaning religion, or making fun of someone’s beliefs, by all means speak out. Once again however, do not fight. Keep it a peaceful conversation, not a angry confrontation.
Remember this as a closing. Be peaceful in your transgressions folks, and don’t forget that it’s about a sinless direction, rather than sinless perfection.
— Lillian Putnam