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1  Fellowship / Witnessing / Re:Quick question... on: November 11, 2004, 09:00:12 AM
I am in a clan, don't get scared it's a gaming clan, and there's a lot of guys that I talk to on a regular basis. Now, I know that we, as Christians, should take every oportunity we can to witness and share the Word. But I sometimes get scared that I might say the wrong thing or even lose friends. What kind of advice can anyone give me to help me be more confident and stronger in my witnessing?


Heyla, Robert! :-).

I'll give you my experiences regarding witnessing that have worked for me Wink . I'm writing this not only for you, but to other christians out there. Some of my advise goes against traditional aproaches, but I've found that its gotten the Word across faster than had I not followed these rules. Witnessing is one of those really touchy subjects among the masses... Or, rather, it is up here. Many Christians around here witness so BADLY that even the simple mention of God and Jesus can turn the softest hearted person into a slobbering beast. As christians, its expected that we do SOME witnessing, but believers have to learn to be GENTLE about the subject. Ramming it down people's throats is a VERY bad way to bring anyone to our faith. Think of the sales person selling a car.. who do you prefer more? The calm, friendly one, or the guy screaming in your ear? I apologize if I sound harsh. As I said, lots of bad preaching is experienced up here. These are the four biggest lessons I've learned. You may or may not do some of these and I apologize if I make it sound like you are **chuckles**. I was pretty bad at everything mentioned below.

1) Never presume people haven't heard about the word of God. Most have heard about him so many times that they've grown deaf to Jesus' salvation. This is especially true in the south USA (Note: Almost everything I've done regarding folks in the south USA has been through the internet, so that might change if you did it face to face.). Call it over exposure, if you'd like. Many HAVE been to church and have grown tired of the petty bickering that many denominations are reknown for. Talk to these people. Don't preach. Ask why they've chosen the path they've chosen. These folks HATE to be preached to! LISTEN before you sing the praises of Jesus to them.

2) Never accuse a person of abandoning God if their faith is different from yours. Many still believe in God, just NOT YOUR DEFINITION OF HIM. Suggest that your God is another path or version they should concider. Politely mention the benifits if they take Christ's way. Thinking of God or Jesus as another path to take may sound ridiculous to us, but to them, while you're hollering hell and damnation, they feel like a sales person is shoving another plate of self righteousness in their face.

3) EDUCATE YOURSELF ABOUT OTHER FAITHS! This is **THE** fastest way to lose a person's respect!! Your faith may say their beliefs are bad, but THEY don't see it that way! NEVER start telling others that they're worshipping the devil and the devil is confusing them. I've done outreach to the pagan community for years and this is THE NUMBER ONE COMPLAINT they have about our faith.  Make sure you get the facts **RIGHT** about a person' beliefs. Don't fall for the stereotypes because in most cases they are bitterly wrong and you end up sounding like an uneducated fool. We all know the stereotypes: Muslims are terrorists. Wiccans / Witches cast curses and they have orgies in the woods. Satanists saccrifice babies and drink blood. None of the above are true. Well, except for the bit about the satanists, but most of them aren't that stupid and would be among the first in line to toss the offenders into the brig. Just because a person is of a certain faith doesn't mean they're a mean, nasty, evil individual at heart. Just because you know one non-believer who did something questionable doesn't mean they're ALL like that. Think of it this way: How would you feel if everyone thought Christians were like the Klu Klux Klan (KKK)? How would you feel if people ran around screaming Christians belonged to a cult of baby killers? Research! **KNOW** who you are talking to. **KNOW** your audience! Earn their respect and you've passed one of the biggest hurdles in witnessing.

4) No need to say jesus' name fifteen times in one sentence  Grin . You'd be suprised how important this is. I found that most non-believers' eyes rolled into the back of their heads and they started seizuring if I laid on the Jesus speak to thick. It bores them to death and they only laugh about you later. Few people take you seriously if the only topic out of your mouth is God Jesus God. Yeah, I know. Some folks are gonna rip a strip off of me for this, but honestly... do you have any idea how stupid we sound when the only thing we can do is quote the bible? Have an actual conversation with these people! Besides.. We don't have to praise God every time we open out mouths. You want to come across as a sane and cheerful person when witnessing, not a blubbering moron. Keep the number of references to bible and jesus to a minimum. Yes.. you want them to know christ, but you don't have sound as if you're selling God and Jesus as if they were wares in a pawn shop!

**Sighs** That's all I can think of right now. Over the years I've found that we have forgotten the love of Christ as he would have loved others. We need to sit down and listen to our audience. Riding our high horse isn't going to win many converts. We may not agree with non-believers and want them to know Christ, but we tend to close our eyes and ears to their problems far too often than we should. Remember as Christ said: "Do as to others as you would yourself" and "Love thy neighbor". Would you like a nice, pleasant conversation with someone, or have someone force feeding their version of Truth down your throat? Politeness and Tact has more punch than slapping them in the face with the Bible. :-)

Remember: BE GENTLE!

Good luck!
2  Entertainment / Animals and Pets / Re:post your joke here ;) on: November 11, 2004, 07:17:28 AM
(I have one about a preacher :-D)

A kid, after a very long and tiring sermon, goes up to a preacher and hands him a dollar. The preacher looks at the dollar, confused. "What's this for?" he asks.

The kid shrugs and points to his dad.

"My dad said that you were one of the poorest preachers he's ever heard."


(Okay.. here's another.)

Q:Why didn't Cain please God?

A:Because he just wasn't Able.

Heehee... Gotta love Beliefnet's Joke of the day!
3  Entertainment / Animals and Pets / Re:Cats on: November 11, 2004, 07:07:55 AM
Cats. Can't live with them and it's illegal to Stir fry 'em...

I have a cat and she reinforces everything I can't stand about them. Yet, I really do like her! Compared to all the dogs I've baby sat and owned, cats are the most self righteous, obnoxious, .... UNTRAINABLE beasts I have ever had to deal with. **Sighs**

I'm trying to train my kitten to avoid the bird cages. Can you tell I'm having problems? Smiley

This is my little Monster... Don't believe the innocent look in a heartbeat!

4  Entertainment / Animals and Pets / Re: my little dog on: November 11, 2004, 07:00:17 AM
Gogs are awsome, eh? Grin I wish I could have one where I live, but nooooo.. landlord won't let anyone have them, no matter how bad their medical problems are **grumble**.

Sorry... Land Lord is an idiot.

I grew up with Whippets, so I'm partial to the Sighthounds (greyhounds, Irish Wolfhounds, Borzi, italian greyhounds, etc).
Here's a pic of my parent's dog, Criket, and my former family dog, Domino. Domino had to be put down in the Spring od 2003. Cry

5  Entertainment / Animals and Pets / Re:Pray for Pets? on: November 11, 2004, 06:47:27 AM
Oh dear.. sorry to hear about the liquidation of the Auto Business and the death of your father! I just lost my Great Aunt. She died from Pancreatic Cancer. From the time she was diagnosed to the time she died, it was only 4 and a half weeks.  Cry

Regarding praying for pets: I don't see why not. I'm the type of person who connects better with animals than I do humans. I've been messed with far to much by humans to understand them any more.  I understand most animals: Eat, sleep, potty and have a good head scratch every so often **chuckles** . I don't see why God would turn his back on these guys. They may not be human, but I do believe they are just as special to him as everything else he holds dear to his heart! If we have a special request regarding a certain wet nose, smooth scale or soft feather, I'm sure he will sit and listen.
6  Entertainment / Animals and Pets / Cockatiel Chicks! on: November 11, 2004, 06:36:34 AM
I just joined this forum, but before I say anything really heavy duty, I thought I'd present my present Prides and Joys:

Fuzzbutt (aka Lupine) :

and Spookie :

They're both october birds, so I thought I'd give them October-ey names :-) . Spookie is the younger of the two and will be 5 weeks this Monday (Nov 15th, 2004). Fuzz is 5 weeks old today. Both will be learning to fly soon and I am SOOOO Impatient! I can't wait to see them get off the ground! **squeals with excitement**

 Grin I'll catch you folks later. I have more messages to post! **giggles** Grin
7  Entertainment / Animals and Pets / Re:Cats are Evil! on: November 11, 2004, 06:19:42 AM

I'm a diehard dog fan here!

I've owned three species of bird, a cat, rats, mice, a hamster and out of them all, I prefer Dogs, Rats and Cockatiels the most. My cat has the brains of a half dead pigeon! Mind you, she's only 6-7 months old and probably hasn't grown into her budgie brains yet. **snickers** . I can't stand cats. I only have one to help control the INSANE wild mouse problem, but hey... if I want to control that problem, then I gotta learn to live with the four legged hissing machine....

Hopefully this image will work.... If not, please proceed to the link mentioned below :-).

and the link in case the posted gobly gook doesn't work.

8  Entertainment / Animals and Pets / Re:Things Dogs are good for......... on: November 11, 2004, 06:10:26 AM

Dogs make great Dishwashers when mom and dad aren't around to baby sit! (Personal experience speaking...) Tongue

Dogs also make great prayer companions and gift openers  Roll Eyes
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