I recently read a blog post by Jon Acoff.
How much time do you spend with non-Christians? Really? How much time do you really spend with non-Christians? How much time is appropriate to spend with non-Christians? If you go to public school, then you probably spend most of your day with non-Christians, but do you actually hang out with them, be with them, or do you just tolerate them until you can get back into your insulated bubble of Jesus?
His post brought up a lot of great points that required me to do a lot of self examination, and I did not like what I found…
I am just as guilty of this as the next person. I have my Christian music, Christian friends, Christian social events, and not to mention all the Christian co-workers I spend my day with, insulating me from the world.
I have spent years building a nice little Christian bubble in which I work and play in. Though, this is not the example Christ has set for us.
Christ said “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick…I came not to call the righteous, but sinners”. If we take Christs example we should be hanging out with non-Christians as well. Jesus was often found with non-Christians, aka tax collectors, and sinners.
William Temple, in the early 20th century, said “The church is the only organization that exists primarily for the sake of non-members.”
As Jon said time = love. No agenda’s, no “projects”, no pre-determined plan of attack to “win over” those non-Christians, but to spend quality time with them.
I once heard a story about a father who wanted to step out of his Christian circle and to spend time with his community; but unfortunately, he did not know how. Although, at first it seemed impossible for him to do so, as most of us think, one day he thought of the perfect solution.
Every Monday night, he and his son, who had graduated from college, went to a local pub in their neighborhood. For three hours, every week, they sat in the same spot. Week after week, month after month, they sat and talked. My friend went with them one night and said it was amazing. In three hours, dozens of people at this local bar came and sat with them. They talked, they shared, they listened, and they became friends. Weddings, funerals, unemployment, all stages of life passed through that small booth, and slowly but surely everyone there learned that these two guys wanted to spend time with them.
When the son later graduated from grad school, the guys at the bar threw him a party. They had become family. Why? Because Time = Love.
It isn’t difficult, and doesn’t mean you have to go drink, but he obviously knew where non-Christians were going to be and they just talked with them, loved on them.
What is stopping you from hanging out with Non-Christians?
First and foremost I am a follower of Christ. I am far from perfect, but everyday I try and take a step forward to be more like Him. I'm a 20 something writer, husband, youth pastor, realtor, entrepreneur, guitarist, and nerd.
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