This is the second in a series on evangelism by Charles LaFond. Â Check out this link for Part 1. Â Check outÂ Charlesâ€™ blogÂ for the full text. And check out the Diocese of New Hampshireâ€™sÂ Evangelism Toolkit, on its website.
II. Start from where you are â€¦the deep, solid encouragement of God in our prayer lives
My home sits on a bluff along the edge of the Blackwater River which flows past it night and day, hour by hour, past my farmhouse. Without the broken ice floes of late winter, it is nearly impossible to see that this river is moving with great power. Calm, deep waters always seem so peaceful and gentle. But the strength â€“ that ancient force of gently flowing water was â€“ in times past, captured up into the wheels of the clothespin factory which once sat on its banks, passed to the huge gears and axles of the mill, and ended in the turning, turning, turning of the great gears which cut wood for clothespins which two generations used to hang clothes to dry- clothespins invented by New England Shakers.
That gentle flowing river, sleepy and majestic as an elderly monarch â€“ flows gently, deep and with great force. No tidal waves. No crashing surf. In no way impeded by the riverâ€™s rocks and trees- 24 hours a day. That is power. So gentle. So powerful. That combination of power and gentleness is our calling as leaders of Evangelism in a church whose culture finds evangelism uncomfortable at best and terrifying at worst.
That power and gentleness â€“ that centeredness and â€œquiet confidenceâ€ as our prayer book calls it â€“ is essential in leading Come and See Membership Growth Campaigns and any other â€œen-courage-mentâ€ we do in leadership in our churches and non-profit organizations.
The Rev. Canon Charles LaFond is the Canon for Congregational Life in the Diocese of New Hampshire. Â The Come and See Membership Growth Campaign Manual is and the 7 minute video summaryÂ can be found here.