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  • Writer's pictureBradley Sliedrecht

Embracing Resilience: The Journey Through Rejection in Evangelism




Introduction

Evangelism is an adventure filled with moments of joy, connection, and profound revelation. However, it’s also a path that can lead us through the valley of rejection. Many of us hesitate to share our faith, fearing the cold shoulder—or worse, outright hostility—that our words might provoke. Yet, understanding and navigating rejection is essential to our calling to spread the Gospel. It teaches us resilience, deepens our dependence on God, and reminds us that the power of conversion rests not in our hands but in His.


The Reality of Rejection

An Expected Part of the Process

Jesus Himself warned us that in following Him, we would face opposition (John 15:18-20). If the Son of God was not exempt from rejection, neither would His followers be. Rejection, while painful, is not an indicator of failure in evangelism; rather, it's a part of the process, a step on the journey.


Reflection: Recall a moment when you faced rejection while sharing your faith. How did it make you feel? How did you respond?


Lessons amid Rejection

Growing Through the Experience

Each instance of rejection offers a valuable lesson. It can teach us humility, reminding us that salvation is a work of the Holy Spirit, not the result of our eloquence or persuasion. It also challenges us to examine our approach, making sure we’re speaking the truth in love, not in a spirit of self-righteousness or judgment.


Practical Tip: After a difficult evangelistic encounter, reflect and pray. Ask God what He wants you to learn from the experience. Seek counsel from mature believers who can provide insight and encouragement.


The Power of Perseverance

Keeping Our Eyes on the Prize

The apostle Paul is a testament to the power of perseverance in the face of rejection. Despite beatings, imprisonment, and constant opposition, he pressed on, keeping his eyes fixed on the prize of his heavenly calling (Philippians 3:14). His resilience was rooted not in his strength but in the grace of God.


Practical Tip: Cultivate a practice of meditating on God's promises, especially those that speak of His presence and power in our trials. Scriptures like Isaiah 41:10 can be a powerful reminder of God’s sustaining grace.


Embracing Resilience in Evangelism

Finding Strength in God

Resilience in evangelism doesn’t mean developing a thick skin or becoming indifferent to rejection. Instead, it’s about finding our strength in God, allowing His love and truth to drive our efforts to share the Gospel.


Practical Tip: Before engaging in evangelism, spend time in prayer, not only for the hearts of those you will speak to but also for your heart, that you may be rooted and grounded in God’s love (Ephesians 3:17).


Conclusion

As we navigate the highs and lows of sharing our faith, let us embrace the journey with resilience, knowing that each step, even those that lead through rejection, is used by God to mold us more into the likeness of His Son. Our call is not to convert but to faithfully sow the seeds of the Gospel, leaving the growth in God’s capable hands.

Let's reflect: How can you move forward in evangelism with resilience, seeing rejection not as a barrier but as a bridge to deeper trust in God and commitment to your calling?

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