In a recent post Brain Croft offers a great way to foster a spiritual conversation on Monday mornings. I have encouraged my congregation to do the same each week. Last year, however, my members informed me that one slight change in my exhortation better equipped them to initiate such conversations.
At the end of every sermon, just prior to the benediction, I used to say, “Tomorrow morning, when you get to work or school, tell someone about the message you heard today.” I thought this small exhortation would encourage people to have weekly conversations with those who do not follow Christ. Some people told me about their Monday morning conversations. I simply assumed others were having conversations with less frequency or struggling with natural fears associated with sharing one’s faith.
During a Members’ Meeting one Saturday last summer, as we spoke about sharing our faith regularly, I again encouraged everyone to take advantage of natural opportunities provided on Monday mornings, and said, “When someone asks you, ‘How was your weekend?’ immediately respond with, “I heard a great sermon on Sunday about [main idea of the sermon and one point of why it was significant to you]. I would love to tell you more about it when you have some time.” Eyes in front of me lit up, very excited smiles appeared on people’s faces, and someone declared to me, “Pastor, that is so helpful! You always tell us to share with people as soon as we get to work on Mondays, but you never tell us how to do it. Now we have a way of starting the conversation. You need to repeat that statement tomorrow after the sermon!” Many heads with smiling faces nodded in agreement.
The next morning, after the message, that one tweaking of my exhortation sent many more people out eagerly to have a Monday morning conversation. Jokingly, yet soberly, I also added, “This will work for about three Mondays before your co-workers catch-on and start to avoid asking about your weekend.” We all laughed, and since that weekend we have had much more joy in starting Monday conversations we hope will lead to the Gospel.