YABS and Evangelism

A month or two ago we started a Young Adult Bible Study (YABS) through our church. It's been an exciting journey so far, as our group has grown each week. We've been going through the book Adventures in Missing the Point by Brian McLaren and Tony Campolo. This book is a really great format for discussing serious and sometimes personal subjects. It's a great book to go through with a group... much better than doing it on your own. We've all learned a lot about one another and we're becoming a tight knit group. It's another exploration/experiment in community.

Tonight is the chapter on evangelism... each time I think about evangelism I am reminded of my real passion for it. I'm not passionate about evangelism in the same way that others are... making others think like them... I am passionate about, first of all, inviting people into a different kind of life in a different kind of kingdom, and secondly, taking back evangelism from the "evangelicals" who have hijacked the whole endeavor. People don't want anything to do with evangelism because, a) it has nothing to do with real life, it's just about believing in some doctrines and going to heaven when you die, and b) because only pushy fundamentalists do that. I am passionate about changing those perceptions and offering a different kind of evangelism--real evangelism--an evangelism which comes from a different kind of life.

For evangelism to be, as it should be, an invitation into a different kind of life then we need to live a different kind of life first... that's the hard part and that's why real evangelism is rarely done. Real evangelism is much easier to replace with a pseudo-evangelism, which forces people to mentally ascent to a list of docrines. If we're gonna invite people into a different kind of life then we're going to have to not only live differently ourselves but we're also going to have to accept all the ambiguity that comes with human experience... and let's face it, evangelicals hate ambiguity.