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Evangelism isn’t a lost cause! New Reset Cohorts begin this Fall


Evangelism isn’t a word you hear much anymore, unless it’s around the time you’re nominating people for committees within the church. Occasionally it may be talked about in terms of someone’s spiritual gifts as if only evangelists can do evangelism. In many ways, evangelism has become a “lost cause” in our programming and efforts today. It seems outdated in a world that shuts garage doors and doesn’t invite “visitation teams” inside for coffee and cookies.  It can even seem intimidating in a culture that labels you a fanatic for talking about faith. What is evangelism and is it really a lost cause? 
A group of South Georgia pastors and laity attended the Exponential Conference in March as part of this year’s Reset Cohort sponsored by the Office of Connectional Ministries. The emphasis of the Reset Cohort was to explore how to reset our churches back on mission and evangelism is an important part of that mission.  The Exponential conference was focused around Evangelism with the theme of, “The Lost Cause.” As we have begun to process and implement what we experienced at Exponential, here are some of the learnings from those who participated. Allow what they have heard and learned to encourage you to revive evangelism in your church and community in a way that is winsome to people and points them to the good news of the Gospel.   
“Evangelism is not about a program or strategy, although those were presented in the breakout sessions. It is about one-on-one relationships with one another and with Jesus. We must rethink “church.” Intentional invitation to our neighbors in our homes, digitally connecting beyond what we did during the surge of Covid, networking via lunch gatherings, etc. can be intentional ‘evangelism’.  I left with two questions.  How intentional is my individual invitation? Where am I being incarnational in my witness and invitation to others to develop a relationship with Jesus Christ?”  - Christy Bandy, Waycross
“I enjoyed every one of the speakers, but it wasn't until I got home and sat down and recapped what happened that I realized how close to my heart this entire event was. As an evangelist at heart, everything about the lost cause began to stir in my spirit, and it was then that the message of Faith Eury Cho began to resonate with my soul. Her message from Acts 1 was that God is a movement – and are you willing to move with God? I feel as though the move of God is not sitting comfortably in our church buildings, where we separate ourselves every Sunday. The movement of God is forcing us to figure out how to receive his power to go to the uttermost parts of the world and testify about his death and resurrection.”  - Chester Harris, Haven Sheffield/New Hope
“We heard that 40 % of Christians think evangelism is wrong, yet 63% of Christians believe they should be a witness to faith in Christ.  Christians are confused!  We must teach them that sharing your witness IS evangelism.” - Danita Knowles, Tabernacle/Tennille
“One thing I think was an important reminder, centered around collaborating with other faith groups to do community work. If you are going to partner with other denominations it's important to lay aside the denominational differences and focus on the goal of serving community. The common ground is to minister to the people, not pushing a denominational agenda.” – Precious Hawkins, Asbury Savannah
“Exponential was not only a learning experience, but a time of spiritual refreshment. The dynamic speakers and passionate, spirit filled worship were amazing. The emphasis on creating movements of evangelism and multiplication was inspiring and motivating. Beyond my expectations, the Holy Spirit brought back to the surface dreams and visions for ministry that had laid dormant in me for years. There was a sense that God did not want me to give up on those things but to move toward them.”  - Jeremy Alexander, St. Mark’s Columbus
“This year's focus was "Lost Cause" highlighting how evangelism can easily be lost in our programing and discipleship efforts. The theme of evangelism shined through every day with inspirational and practical tools for reaching people with the Good News. I liked seeing the many ways that ministry can happen in the 21st century. From discipleship models for established churches to cell group models for new faith communities, there are many diverse and creative ways to reach people!”  Matt Waldron, Guyton 
“This was my first time attending Exponential Conference, and I will certainly be back! I learned so many things, but I especially enjoyed the workshops and prayer time that was offered to those attending. My biggest takeaway was from one of the workshops, and the speaker shared some wisdom that really resonated with myself and other leaders in my life: ‘Any leadership that requires affirmation from others, is distracted leadership. Be filled with worth from God, and the confidence that He has you in His arms always. Unless you're filled with that knowledge, your leadership will always be a debt to you.’" – Sara Fullerton, Encounter Church
“I was really blessed by attending the Exponential Conference! The worship music and speakers were amazing. I think we have become afraid of the word, evangelism, and allowed the word to take on a negative meaning. We all need the reminder of how to share the good news of Jesus Christ in a positive, inclusive way. The workshops shared innovative ways to go into the community and simply just talk to others about Jesus.”  - Angela Gilbert, Trinity Warner Robins
If you’d like to participate in next year’s Reset Cohort, and learn about resetting your church on mission, sign up here:

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