How Do I Help People See That Jesus Is Relevant for Them Today?

AUTHOR: Cameron Fair

Questions and Barriers About Evangelism


 Psalm 96:1-13. How does this psalm encourage us to share the good news?


During the 13 weeks of e90, we will focus on the practice of evangelism. Each week we will address a question or common barrier related to sharing our faith. Take the next 5 minutes to read a blog from Cameron Fair about how we can help other people see how Jesus still matters today.  


How do I help people see that Jesus is relevant for them today?


While working at a camp one summer, I noticed a student whose older siblings had attended that camp with me when I was younger. I ran up to him and said, “Hey, I think I roomed with your brother one year. How is he doing?” The student answered this question by describing his brother’s spiritual gifts in detail. Even though I was directing a church camp, it felt bizarre that he would answer this way. I wondered if his brother was doing well in his classes, if he had job prospects, if he’d found a girlfriend. I’d asked, “How is he doing?” not “How is he doing… spiritually?”

This interaction illustrates one of the distinctive marks of modern life. There is an underlying assumption that the physical world is all that matters. Outside of a couple of hours on Sunday morning, talk of a transcendent God seems meaningless. Maybe He exists, maybe there is some Ultimate Good, maybe there is a Higher Power, but who cares? The “Good Life” feels more or less within our reach. Get a degree, land a nice job, make some valuable connections. If problems arise, the answers lie with doctors, counselors, or financial advisors, not with some invisible, untouchable god.

One of the biggest challenges in evangelism is breaking down the wall between the transcendent and the immanent. We want people to see that there’s something more out there, and we want that something to feel relevant to their daily lives. How do we do that?

Here is how it happened for my friend Bryan. His mother was diagnosed with breast cancer. After some secondary scans, the doctors found several tumors. They attached metallic clip markers to localize each tumor for easy identification and progress tracking. When chemotherapy is maximally effective, the clip markers are often the only remaining indication of the original tumor site. But, this wasn’t true for Bryan’s mom. When she returned after her first round of treatment, there was no evidence that she had ever had cancer. No tumors, no clips.

I love apologetics. I believe there are strong philosophical arguments supporting the existence of God. But, if you ask me why I trust Jesus, why I pray to Him each day, why I turn to Him in both rejoicing and mourning, I’m not going to recite the ontological argument. Instead, I’m going to share stories. And while your narratives may not feel as cinematic as Bryan’s, you do have them. God provided for you when more money flowed out than came in. He spoke through His Word just when you needed it most. He comforted you in the middle of sorrow. He changed your heart, helped you overcome an addiction, opened new doors, and graciously closed others. 

These stories probably won’t convince your non-Christian friends to sell their belongings and become missionaries. But stories are the most effective tool to encourage an openness to the reality of God’s presence in everyday life.  When we share how God is moving in our daily lives, or even share how we are trusting He will move, we reject the assumption that all we see is all there is. We disrupt the world’s insistence on immanence and boldly declare that we have experienced the transcendent. We’re helping others wonder, “Could there be something more? And could He care about me?” 

This is especially true with our friends. If I had read Bryan’s story online, it wouldn’t have affected me the same way. But I knew him. I’d had deep conversations with him. I knew he wasn’t crazy, so I couldn’t dismiss him and say he was seeking attention or getting his facts wrong. I had to consider the real possibility that God had performed a miracle.

Over the next week, I encourage you to incorporate these two questions into your daily prayer routine: Where did I see God at work today? Where might I have missed Him? Over time, as we ask these questions and train ourselves to be aware of His transcendent presence, we will build up a list of stories declaring, “God is real, and God is doing something today.”

It’s not the silver bullet of evangelism, but story-sharing is vital to help people see the relevance of Jesus. I’m reminded of the blind man in John 9, and I pray that his story will be reflected in your lives as you share your faith with others. Though the blind man couldn’t answer all of the Pharisees’ questions about Jesus, he could tell them what he had experienced. “Whether he is a sinner I do not know. One thing I do know, that though I was blind, now I see.” John 9:25


Pray for your 9 for 90 seconds; pray for God to bless them.

Day 86 of 90


  1. Justin@leawood

    A good encouragement, Cameron! I used to read Psalms like today with an attitude of “God says we are supposed to praise Him.” But now I see todays Psalm as overflow from a heart that is rejoicing in God. Because his God has delivered him and shown himself much better than those things that others hope in (v5).

    How did I get from a person who says “God just wants me to do things I don’t want to do because he only cares about himself” to “Gods ways are better! He knows what he is talking about”? Trying it out (aka exercising a little faith), and praying prayers like “God, if you’re real, please come find me.”

    Just last week i mentioned to someone that, years ago, I told my sister that I knew I was supposed to love others, but I just didn’t. I asked her to pray for me. I’m please to share that, over time, God changed me. He re-wired me. And now it is my privilege and joy to care for hurting people in many counseling sessions throughout the week. The Lord is better!

  2. Cathy

    God is at work daily in our lives. Getting a green light when in a hurry, while avoiding a new collision from a distracted motorist is a daily example. God keeps me safe, gets me to my destination. God provides food daily, clean water, a home, without God, I wouldn’t see this and think I provided. How hard it would be to provide this alone, what a heavy burden.
    God is good and greatly to be praised –daily we see His work.

  3. Anne

    If I had no stories, I would have no 9, at the very least not in the list for evangelizing. If I had no mental and emotional currency regarding my walk with Christ Jesus, I would be speaking, not with unbelievers, but strictly with those within my purview whom we may tempt ourselves to classify as unchurched, incomplete, or suffering from wrong theology. All of the above may be part or all of the spiritual diagnosis of these friends, but the purely ontological approach may possibly fall more easily into acceptance with one of these than with the sworn unbeliever. My personal experience with both types of friends has been that there is far more acceptance of the notion of a relational God who works within the framework of our lives when that notion is linked to my personal, real-life experience.


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


Share This