9.26.2006

Daring 2 Share

Last week I attended a youth leader's meeting at the local Dave & Buster's. Didn't get to play any games, but we got a free lunch and heard from Greg Stier, the energetic head of Dare 2 Share ministries. D2S is a youth evangelism conference held all across the country, and it's getting bigger every year.

After going to the conference last February, I wrote an article for our church newsletter, and thought I'd share an edited version with you now. This fits incredibly well with what God has been showing me lately—all the ways He designed us to interact with one another, both for love and support, and as His means to share His love and spread His Word, sharing with others who Jesus Christ is.

Read on...

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Some of you may have heard of the Dare 2 Share youth evangelism conference. Students from my church have been attending for years, well before my time there. But since becoming a youth sponsor I’ve been able to attend at least portions of the conference three times now, and it has provided me some interesting opportunities for growth and renewal.

I wasn’t at all sure how to share the Gospel as a young believer. I based my presentation, or lack of one, on how I responded to people who tried to share with me before I was a Christian. Usually I thought they were kind of crazy and dismissed them entirely. My attitude was that my belief was none of their business, and they should get out of my face. (Or was it “get out of my faith?”) So when I became a Christian I didn’t share much, partly for fear that people would run the other way and never want to hear it from anyone ever again.

Thankfully over time, and with some discipleship, I learned that evangelism isn’t just “in the mall, in your face,” and that there are gentler approaches. Admittedly, I hadn’t felt that D2S was necessarily offering the “gentle approach” at conferences past. The goal on Saturday afternoon is to go door to door, with the recently revised approach of collecting canned goods for Sunshine Ministries, and then to present the Gospel. Presentation is up to the individual, but they provide a book with an acronym of Gospel basics and some lead-in scripts, usually with thought-provoking yet blunt questions such as, “Do you know where you would end up if you died today?” This year I was pleased to see an alternate script that simply asked, “Are there any prayer requests that you have that we can pray for?” as the lead-in. I thought this was a perfect option for someone who isn’t of the bolder mindset, and though I was unable to go with the group on Saturday afternoon this year, I heard a lot of positive responses to that one.

I certainly don’t want to put God in a box. He can use any of these approaches to draw others to Him. But I can say that learning all these different avenues is still useful to me as an adult in day to day discussion, and I have seen and heard the effect that it has on our students as well.

Since this is a youth conference, I thought it might make sense to find out what some of our youth have to say about it. So the senior high discussed D2S this week and I asked everyone to write down their thoughts, whether they attended this year or in years past, or even if they’d never been at all and had simply heard about it from others. Here’s what a few of them had to say:

“My first year of D2S was a life changing experience. The skit they performed opened my eyes to the fact that we really don’t
have much time. We wait for “the right time” to share the Gospel with our friends. What was I waiting for? These people aren’t
going to pick up a Bible one day and be changed by John 3:16. God doesn’t need us to help, but he asks us to.”
-Danny

“It’s an excellent opportunity for youth through even college age to get out in the community and spread the Gospel. By
going door to door, it seems to get easier to ask strangers if they know Jesus as their Lord and Savior.”
-Colleen

“It’s extremely encouraging to be in a stadium filled with other teenagers praising our Father. It’s made me realize that God equips us all with different gifts for the purpose of serving Him. I don’t have to be outspoken and bold to be a witness to others. It also prepares us to fight the battle that’s raging on our own homefront.”
-Jannah

“Dare 2 Share is an interesting program. Although I am not extremely thrilled with their witnessing techniques, D2S is a great
way to realize that we, as teenagers – many of us being in public schools—are not alone in our desire to share the Gospel.
Unfortunately, I am not confident in the fabricated Gospel presentation guidelines. It tends to make it dry and somewhat
monotonous. I do, however, think that D2S provides good practice for someone not accustomed to sharing their faith.”
-Jessica

“Dare 2 Share can be a great way to jump start your faith. The conference gets you excited about God, and helps you get over the fear of sharing your faith.”
-Josh

“I loved being in such a big place with so many teens with the same goal—to start a revolution for Jesus. This was my first time going to Dare 2 Share. It was very inspiring and I definitely reconnected with God!”
-Erin

“Dare 2 Share is a time to learn more about God and rekindle your day-to-day, lukewarm relationship with Him into the burning passion so many of us long for.”
-Andrew

“This past year at D2S I was really convicted about telling my friends about Christ and my relationship with Him. I’m actually
giving one of my friends a letter telling her my beliefs this week. It has also given me a passion for growing in my relationship with Jesus daily!”
-Megan

I appreciate some of the candor in these responses, and I want to thank all the students who helped me out with this. There were plenty more comments I simply didn’t have the space to include.

Dare 2 Share is definitely a super-charged experience, so I pray that students who attend really do take something permanent away with them, even as the “experience” fades over time. As I’ve seen in my own life, there’s always something more to learn, something new to grow on. And I’m grateful that our youth are constantly being equipped even beyond the answers I sought well into my college years.

These guys truly are blessed. I pray they use it for His glory.

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Matthew 4:19:
Then He said to them,
"Follow Me, and I will make you
LostSeed.com

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