Create an environment for open faith discussions that point people to the Gospel.
Connect with unchurched people in your community through discussions in a nonthreatening public venue about a wide range of topics with a faith component, such as family, money, materialism, health and heaven.
Morningside Assembly of God in Sioux City, Iowa, started a Lifetree Café at a local strip mall to reach the unchurched and dechurched, Associate Pastor Lee Crum says. At one gathering with the theme “Hurt by Church,” three people who attended “talked through their experiences and began to heal and forgive,” Crum recounts. “They have stayed connected to Lifetree Café; one has made a first-time commitment to Christ and is being integrated into church,” Crum says.
Another gathering attracted four reincarnation proponents, and a small crack seemed to develop in their belief system. “We’ve had ongoing communication with them about the concept and were able to share many scriptural references” that they’ve received well,” Crum says.
Other changed lives include two women who were having affairs with married men, Crum notes, adding that one got pregnant and was considering an abortion while the other decided to confess her affair to her husband. Lifetree’s “nonjudgmental and loving atmosphere” helped promote openness and trust and attractiveness to the Gospel without diluting it in any way, Crum says.
This article was part of a feature about effective evangelism tools in the November/December 2011 issue of Outreach magazine.