Are you a Storyteller or a Salesperson?
One of my biggest pet peeves is walking past those little stores in the middle of malls and being flagged down by someone trying to sell me a phone cover or screen protector.
How often do we try to sell Jesus in a similar way as these telemarketers and salespeople?
Does Jesus really need to be sold? What makes us think that Jesus is such an unattractive product that he needs to be promoted in order for others to want to follow him?
In Matthew 4:19, Jesus calls his first disciples to follow him and tells them that he will make them fishers of men. Many Christians seem to think that to be fishers of men, we need to try and sell Jesus to others.
I don't know much about fishing but I do know that fishermen do not run around chasing after fish. That would not work. Much like people who run away from pushy salespeople, the fish would quickly swim away from human disturbance.
We do not need to sell Jesus to others. The Jesus story naturally draws people in. All we have to do is tell that story in creative ways. Through our preaching, worship, conversation and actions, we are able to tell the Jesus story in a way that naturally invites people into community with Christ.
Let me clarify that this post is not slamming salesmen and women. They have difficult, important jobs of promoting their company's products. But this is my point. Products need to be sold. Jesus does not.
Jesus never forced people to follow him. We don't have to either. Jesus told stories and then invited others to join God's ever-evolving story. I wonder how often we get in the way of Jesus' naturally enticing story when we try to force him onto others. Let us learn to become storytellers rather than salesmen.
“Come, follow Me,” Jesus said, “and I will make you fishers of men.”- Matthew 4:19 (BSB)