Catholic author and speaker, Matthew Kelly once said: "Our lives will change when our habits change." I couldn't agree more.
Our habits, though, don't come out of thin air. They are born in our brains. Our actions stem from our thoughts. How we actually think about something determines what we actually end up doing. It's why St. Paul tells the Romans that they will "be transformed by the renewing of their minds." (Romans 12:2)
So, before we can get into the habit of sharing our faith, we need to acknowledge what comes to mind when we think about discussing our faith with someone else.
And if you are anything like me you've given into a particular way of thinking that might prevent you from sharing the love of God with others before you even get started.
Here's the kicker.
When we hear someone say that we should “share our faith with others”, what I think we often hear is that we are supposed to “increase the faith of others.”
Well, those are two very different things.
One is under our control the other one isn’t. Can you guess which is which?
Yet, it's no wonder we stop dead in our tracks. We are so hungry for results, we forget, in this situation that's not our job.
Repeat after me:
"I can't be expected to increase somebody else's faith (that's a job for grace and the Holy Spirit), but simply to share my own."
Still you cry, "BOOO!!" because you want to see the fruit of your labors, return on your investments, and results for your hard work. I'm with you. I do too. But that's not how the spiritual life works, and the sooner we get our thinking right about what's our responsibility and what isn't, the sooner someone's life might change because they've heard the good news.
Jesus says it best: “This is what the kingdom of God is like. A man scatters seed on the ground. Night and day, whether he sleeps or gets up, the seed sprouts and grows, though he does not know how." (Mark 4:27)
It's my job to pray, it's God's job to set people free.
It's my job to trust, it's God's job to transform.
It's my job to to speak, it's God's job to convict.
It's my job to scatter seed, it's God's job to provide the growth.
Question: Is sharing your faith with others something you aspire to? What thoughts spring to mind at the prospect of talking with others about God? Are they positive, negative, or just plain overwhelming?