Lennox Evangelical Church in Dumbarton didn’t just invite Solas to come and do some evangelism-training with them; they made a day of it – by inviting us to work with them in an evangelistic meeting that evening!
They hired a local hotel for their annual outreach dinner this year which worked really well. Church members were encouraged to buy tickets and invite their friends to come for a good meal, and hear an after-dinner speaker. For many people, saying ‘let me buy you a ticket for a dinner in a hotel, and hear a short talk’, is a lot easier than saying ‘come to church with me!’ There seem to be quite a few people who will happily come to the hotel bar, who would not consider an invitation to an event in a church. The fact that Christians are offering to pay for their friends to come adds an element of hospitality and generosity to the invitation as well. The church subsidised the tickets to make it easier fr people to come as well.
The hotel provided a lovely dinner, and people sat around tables of six – chatting with the friends they had brought, along with others. After dinner, I spoke on “The Pursuit of Happiness”, which is a talk I use a lot with non-Christian audiences. I talk about the way in which we look for happiness in all the wrong places and really only if look for in it connection with the God who made you and designed you and in whom you can find true joy and happiness.
The audience seemed to be really engaged and the aim was to help the church to have further conversations with their friends about Jesus to help them discover him for themselves.
Professor David Galloway, the host from the local church said, “The real encouragement was that fact that several sceptics in the audience listened very attentively to the talk and I know of several follow on conversations that occurred afterwards. One is particular with a scientist. We’ll certainly have a chance to follow this up. The “Pursuit of Happiness” talk just right for that occasion and that audience. we are now planning some follow up events to develop these contacts.”
One notable feature of the evening was that along with people from Lennox Evangelical, there were people from other churches in the area – and those with no church connection across all ages ranges. The youngest person I spoke to was eleven, and the oldest in their mid-eighties; with good range of people in between. Young adults are sometimes the hardest group to get to these events, but there were plenty of them present too, which was really good to see.
Thsi kind of evangelism can seem really daunting the first time you attempt it, so if you are wanting a hand in reaching out to your community, please do contact us at Solas. We work with all kinds of chuches in all sorts of different communities to help communicate the saving message of Jesus.