It’s Hard To Reach People Today!
by Steve Parr
“Still other seed fell on good ground; when it sprang up, it produced a crop: 100 times what was sown.” Luke 8:8 HCSB
Where is that “good ground?” You are familiar with ‘the parable of the sower.” You recall how some of the seed fell on hard ground, some seed was trampled on, and yet some of the seed was choked out by the thorns. If only we knew where the “good ground” was. It seems that people are harder to reach and people are growing less responsive to the gospel. On the other hand, you and I have a responsibility to faithfully share. How are we to respond to the difficulty we face in reaching this generation?
Is it time to give up? Should we simply acknowledge that the ground is “hard” and stop wasting our energy in sowing the seed? I want to say “no, for heaven’s sake!” Jesus taught in this parable that the seed is the word of God. The “hard ground” is acknowledged in the parable, but it is not the focus. Jesus reminds us that when the word of God is sown into the fertile soil that it bears enduring fruit. I believe that we should faithfully sow the seed among all people, all generations, in all communities, and in all nations. But, I want to take opportunity to direct you to some fertile soil. Yes, it is out there and the opportunity to see people come to know Christ is available if your congregation is willing to be intentional and persistent in sowing in this “good ground.” “Where is it at?” you ask.
Question: One week of the year accounts for 15% of the baptisms in Georgia. Which week is it?
Question: More than 65% of decisions are made for Christ among this group each year. Which group is it?
Question: Most adults trust Christ when two dynamics converge that make them open to the Gospel. What are these two dynamics?
Do you want to see evangelistic results? Do you want to sow your seed in some good soil? If so, you need to know the answer to these questions and you need to be purposeful and strategic in these areas. Addressing these issues is not the sum of evangelism or the whole of evangelism. I simply want to point you to some “good soil” and challenge you to take your congregation there no matter what your preferred style of ministry. In addition, you cannot simply “go through the motions.” Many of you will say: “we do that!” Do you do it prayerfully? Do you do it well? Do you do it with an intentional evangelistic focus? Space does not permit sufficient commentary, but I want to get the wheels of your mind turning and hopefully your heart stirring. Go and sow the seed!
Answers: 1) VBS 2) Ages 9-19 or Youth 3) A crisis occurs in their life and a Christian (group) is there in their time of need.