The general buzz of this time of year – parties, traditions, commercials, etc. – creates multiple opportunities for engaging in spiritual conversation. Believer and nonbeliever alike are primed for these conversations. It is one of the most natural times of the year to share our faith and the reason for our hope.
Sharing our faith is a critical aspect of what it means to be a follower of Jesus. The gospel rides on the rails of relationships, and the workplace is one of the best arenas for building relationships. Sharing our faith is not all there is to faith and work, but it is a critical part of it.
Yet many of us excuse ourselves from this responsibility. Sometimes it’s because of inappropriate fear; more often it’s because we just don’t know how.
We’ve all been there: it is clear that there is an opportunity to take a conversation to a deeper level, but we stall because we’re not sure how to do it without damaging a relationship or being awkward.
Here are some ideas for getting into spiritual conversations in a way that is natural and respectful of others:
- Pay attention. Really listen to your co-workers in your casual office conversations. Do they drop any hints of spiritual engagement? Observe how they’re carrying themselves – the holiday season is tough for many people for a variety of reasons, and often people are more vulnerable and open to the gospel than they otherwise would be. Pay attention and put yourself in a position to share.
- Talk about what is natural. It’s natural this time of year to talk about Christmas shopping, the college football playoff, and holiday plans. Sharing more of who you are is perfectly natural. Ask people about their Christmas traditions, and share yours.
- Take what they give you. You can tell if someone is opening up or shutting down in a conversation. If you share your advent tradition and the coworker seems interested, go deeper. If they don’t seem interested, don’t go deeper. It’s that simple. You have planted a seed and you can trust God with the results.
Pray for opportunities to engage your coworkers in spiritual conversations, and pray for the courage and wisdom to take advantage of those opportunities.
Above all, remember that sharing the gospel is not a one-size-fits all approach. The reality is that we should be sharing our faith at all times, through our integrity and decision making, the way we serve and treat others, the quality of our work, etc. And then when it is appropriate to reveal more of our faith, who we are and what drives us, it will be received in a more authentic and natural way.
We should be winsome with our actions at all times and wise with our words when opportunities become clear.
This holiday season, let’s take advantage of the opportunities.