How do I approach the contacts I know and get them to sit down and have a Bible study? This is the question I am asked most often during HTHSOE training seminars. I would definitely recommend that you do not ask for a Bible study. If you have to ask for it, you will probably be turned down. Taking one from contact to study is a leap too far. May I suggest an intermediate step? Why not try “prospecting?”
Prospecting is the process of cultivating the soils of the heart through Christian kindness, love, benevolence, and hospitality. Jesus was the Master Prospector. His compassion for sinners drew huge crowds and helped make Him the most successful evangelist in human history. Prospecting requires a personal investment and interaction. There is no shortcut to till the soils of the heart. Here are a few prospecting tips:
- Offer a free ride to worship on your customized House to House/Heart to Heart information page (front-left column). We have baptized at least two people annually because of this one offer.
- Develop an evangelistic benevolent ministry. Any offer for assistance should be accompanied by Bible teaching. This can result in dozens of conversions!
- Start and properly utilize a Compassion Card Ministry. This work alone should produce 3-5 baptisms annually.
- Meals! Meals! Meals! Nothing breaks down barriers like food. A meal will give you time to connect with the contact and gather information to help you during the Bible study.
- Engage in acts of service to let non-saints see Christianity in action. Mowing a lawn, cleaning a house, or other displays of compassion are great ways to break down the hardest of hearts.
The next time you want to study the Bible with a friend or co-worker, get out the tiller, and cultivate the soil! Several years ago, a preacher well into his 90s came up after the seminar. He said, “I used to train congregations in evangelism and always reminded the brethren, ‘you have to earn the right to have a Bible study.’” Prospecting is how you earn the right. For more information on how to start and/or properly utilize House to House/Heart to Heart, Compassion Cards, or other evangelistic benevolent ministries, please contact me. Rob@housetohouse.com.