Last blog, we rebuffed the idea that “if we don’t reach someone for Christ by the time they are 18, we never will.” (Read it here.)
Which raised the question, if it’s really possible to reach people after 18, what do we need to do? What’s our part?
Turns out, it’s primarily about who and how.
For people raised in Christian homes, ‘who’ is simple. It’s all about the parents. “For people raised in Christian homes, 80 percent identify their parents as one of the most important influences.” (1) For believers, the key influencer for a child’s faith is not their youth worker or their children’s teacher. It’s almost all about Mom and Dad.
But here’s the kicker. While 80% of that group mention their parents, people who come to faith from outside the church almost never cite their parents as a major influence. And they rarely cite a pastor either. “What made the real difference with the unchurched were personal relationships. The majority who find Christ, look back and say that it was a friend who influenced them toward faith.”
In other words, when it comes to adults coming to Jesus, the who is you.
So if there are adults you know who aren’t following Jesus, they’re probably not waiting for a religious professional or a catchy ad or the perfect sermon.
They’re waiting for you.
Next blog, we’ll tackle How.
(1) All quotes are from the article “How Outsiders Find Faith” by Mike Fleischmann. You can read the whole thing here.