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Summary: What should our attitude be when we evangelize? What should we expect and be prepared for? Also, there just might be one surprising category of people to whom the Lord wants us to reach.

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Colossians 4:2-6

“Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful. And pray for us, too, that God may open a door for our message, so that we may proclaim the mystery of Christ, for which I am in chains.

“Pray that I may proclaim it clearly, as I should. Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity.

“Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.”

The NLT phrases verse 6 this way: Colossians 4:6 (NLT)

“Let your conversation be gracious and attractive so that you will have the right response for everyone.”

As we head for Make a Difference Sunday with Don Sunshine we’ll be taking a look at some aspects of evangelism. Not how to talk to people about the Lord but what our attitudes should be like when engaging with those who don’t know Jesus.

I don’t put much stock in listening to secular music because the Bible instructs us to

“Fix (our) thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise.” Philippians 4:8

Much of secular is just the opposite: untrue, dishonorable, morally wrong and impure, ugly and shameful and unworthy of praise.

It’s kind of like being real hungry and looking through a barrel of rotten apples looking for one good one …

However … every once in a while a song comes along in secular music that has some good qualities and a seemingly Christian message.

One such song was recorded by Glen Campbell in 1970 called Try a Little Kindness and if you would indulge me, let’s listen to this song and see how it lines up with the Bible, that is of course, the ultimate test of truth.

Play video of Try a Little Kindness (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lX63u9LEhdQ)

That’s a great song! Let’s take a look at some of the lyrics …

Let’s start from the end!

“And if you try a little kindness, you’ll overlook the blindness

Of the narrow minded people on their narrow minded streets.”

Everyone is narrow minded, even those who claim to be tolerant of other people’s views.

Some Christians are narrow minded, not wanting to help the down and out thinking that they deserve what is happening to them.

This is not about becoming “broad minded” where we embrace sin.

The person who is lost may also be narrow minded about Jesus because of the lack of love shown by some Christians.

They may react to us in a judgmental way because of preformed opinions or the way they have been previous treated by other Christians. We need to be prepared for that!

When we try a little kindness, show the love of Christ to them they may very well see their need for Jesus.

What do we mean by “Try a little kindness?”

Jesus was the example for us

Matthew 9:36 says,

“When (Jesus) saw the crowds, He had compassion on them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd.”

If we try a little kindness and compassion and allow the love of Jesus to shine through us just a little bit we may find the pure joy of being used by God.

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So, let’s go back to the beginning of the song …

“If you see your brother standing by the road, with a heavy load, from the seeds he sowed.”

“And if you see your sister falling by the way …”

What about that? - You see them … now what?

Let’s assume for this discussion today that this brother and sister are those who at best know the ways of God. They’ve been raised in the church and know right from wrong. In the worst case scenario they are believers or former believers who have fallen into sin and may have even rejected Christ.

“with a heavy load, from the seeds he sowed”

What is our gut reaction? “You’ve made your bed, sleep in it.”

He already has a heavy load from the sins he’s committed

This man is not living in rebellion but is crushed by the rebellion that he has already committed

She is headed in the same direction

How does Scripture instruct us to engage with those who are headed into sin or are already being crushed by the result of sin?

Colossians 4:6 (NLT)

“Let your conversation be gracious and attractive so that you will have the right response for everyone.”

Galatians 6:1 (NLT)

“Dear brothers and sisters, if another believer is overcome by some sin, you who are godly should gently and humbly help that person back onto the right path. And be careful not to fall into the same temptation yourself.”

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