In Our recent School of Evangelism, I was asked to create a session on Evangelism in a Rural Setting.
As I pondered this request, the session I presented was exactly the answer! There are two types of evangelism that will work in a large city as well as in a rural area. Many people think the rules change depending on where you live; in certain situations that may be so, but some things will work anywhere!
Number 1 in my book is Friendship Evangelism. George Barna found that non-christians did not feel offended when a family member or a friend engaged them i s spiritual dialogue. Otherwise, 44% found an evangelistic encounter a negative experience.
Simply put friendships open the doors for witnessing! Matthew 11:19 tells us Jesus was a friend of tax collectors and sinners. That really kinks the hair of religious folks! He went where the fish were, so to speak and built a relationship with them. This is so vividly portrayed in John 4 with the woman at the well.
Secondly, Servanthood Evangelism in my opinion is the second greatest form of evangelism in the world! Because the church lives and dies by the love offering, most of the time when the world sees us outside the four walls of the church, it's usually to sell donuts, chicken plates and spagetti dinners. And many people are willing to support those activities when they see us (especially youth) working for it!
But when they see a group of Christians picking up trash, painting a neighbors house, remodeling a kids park in a project, it causes them to see the church is not always after money; we want to show Jesus came to serve, not to be served! There are a lot of preachers who need to go back and pick that up and put it back in their Bibles! (Mark10:45)
These two forms of evangelism work in every country, among every economic group, for every race, and yes, it will work in a rural setting also!
But you have to do it before it works!