Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Sharing the Gospel Is Our Responsibility

If we were more active in actual missionary work, we would retain more of the people whom we bring to church with us and are baptized as a result.

I think too many members still see the conversion process as a linear progression:

1) missionaries find people; 2) they teach people; 3) they invite them to church; 4) they baptize them; 5) we fellowship them once they are baptized - or at least, once they are close enough to baptism to have the PEC start discussing a HT assignment.

I believe if we viewed the conversion process the way that Preach My Gospel describes it, we would be approaching it very differently. It would be:

WE invite and bring friends and family and acquaintances to church; 3) the missionaries teach them whenever they are ready AFTER they start attending church with us - no matter how long that takes; 4) WE baptize our friends and help them prepare for the temple.

We should be the central part of the process, but too many members still view their role as secondary and supportive of the missionaries. It should be the other way around - just like the ideal that has been preached for quite a while.


adamf said...

Timely post!

I learned again last night that God works quite well with what we give him. After I went home teaching, I left the Presidency message in my car that I had printed out. I had a thought, "you should give this to your friend." I then went to the movie "Drag Me To Hell" with said friend (he loves horror movies, and this one, despite the title, I thought would be doable for me--it was like a horror amusement park ride, VERY VERY jumpy). Anyway, after the movie I was kind of freaked out, so naturally I was praying (and kind of repenting, lol), and again the thought came, "give the message to your friend"). We were driving home separately so I kept ignoring it, but about halfway home I called him and told him what I was feeling. He said he also felt like we needed to talk. We met a few minutes later, and I shared the message, as well as my testimony about the spirit, and prayer, and peace. He really liked it, and shared with me an experience he had had recently feeling the spirit when he accepted Christ as his savior (he just got an internship at a protestant-based agency). Oh, and the Mormon missionaries also "randomly" knocked on his door earlier that day. :)

I affirmed to him that his beliefs and conversion to anything are between him and God alone, and that he shouldn't let me or any pastor or missionary tell him what to believe, but that he should follow the Spirit. I was very appreciative that I was not trying to coerce him. All in all, a very good night, movie and all. :)

Anonymous said...

ep. My main issue being: making friends.