How to Be a Christian Others Feel Comfortable Talking With About Faith

Want to be able to talk with others about your Christian faith without coming off as a preachy, holier-than-thou busybody? Here are a few friendly tips on being a winsome ambassador of your faith.


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    Recognize that faith is a sensitive subject. Be prepared to remain calm, friendly, and welcoming, as opposed to defensive, hostile and superior.
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    Know and be comfortable with the Bible Make sure you are well informed about the Bible. Carry a pocket sized Bible (like a Gideon's) so that you have some reinforcement.
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    Wait for the appropriate time. When you're in a large group of people, such as at a party, unless you're approached specifically, that's probably not the best time. The most agreeable circumstance is in a small group or one on one. Even then, watch for an opening - and recognize that if there isn't one, you shouldn't be the one to bring this subject up.
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    Listen to the viewpoints of others without interrupting, objecting, or correcting. Once the discussion has begun, it's very helpful to understand why a person believes other than what you believe. Hearing them talk about their own belief system will allow you to then, thoughtfully and calmly, say, "I see, you know, I don't think I ever knew that about you. You know that I'm a Christian, right? (they nod or whatever) Generally, the Christian belief is ________." Keep your response as brief as possible.
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    Don't monopolize the discussion. As mentioned, particularly in a setting where there is more than one person you're chatting with, let them talk first. You respond.
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    A friendly, respectful manner is one that will be greeted with reciprocal respect. If you start getting hostile or frustrated, you will give the other person the impression that they are not only NOT entitled to their own beliefs, but that they're actually stupid for having them. Nothing will get you - and Christianity in general - shut out quicker than for the person you're trying to reach to think that you believe they are (1) stupid, (2) condemned, (3) misguided, (4) ignorant. Even if you do think so.
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    Remember your goal. You're not there to 'win' this argument. You're not there to argue. You're there to present the Christian faith in a positive way that is interesting enough to at least one other person that you will be granted the privilege of sharing your faith with them. You are not better than them because you're a Christian. You are simply blessed in a way they are not as of yet. Don't make this about you. Remember who you are - you are the face of Jesus that this person is seeing at that moment. Make sure you're presenting him accurately.
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    Resist the temptation to quote a lot of scripture. Sometimes we feel that the Word is the most powerful tool there is for reaching the non-Christian. It is, no doubt. But it's only that powerful tool when used at the right moment - a hammer is a powerful tool, too, but it isn't much help in tying a fly fishing lure. At that first moment, the most powerful tool you have is your own charming personality. Believe in yourself - you're a nice person, you know how you want to be treated in a conversation. Just do that for the other person, and talk from your own heart. Pray for help. It'll be there.
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    Don't be afraid to use humor. Keep it light - for now. A sense of humor about God is very appealing to many people who are seeking. A lot of these people are lonely, searching for meaning, but don't want to be involved in something they perceive as restrictive or limiting, and they really don't want to be all depressed. Reminding people that it really was God who said, "Hmmm. Here's a... yellow horse... with a really long neck and brown spots... and ANTENNAS! I like it! We are SO keeping this guy!" can be very attractive.
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    Accentuate the positive. Don't threaten people with damnation and hell. You will see their shields go up every single time. Instead, concentrate on explaining that the reason you're at peace, that you are confident and assured is that you have faith that all is well in God's hands, and that faith and hope that you have in Him is what makes your serenity possible in the face of the worst storms in your life. That's attractive. Fire and brimstone is not with some people.
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    But if you must. A conversation about Hell is necessary to people who don't already know that a particular habit or path leads to destruction and need or want someone to care enough to remind them. Fire and brimstone should only be spoken when you know that your relationship of heart will end up closer before the nightfall. WARNING: You don't want to do a disservice to them and Christ. Also, it shouldn't just be spoken as "fire and brimstone", but (also) more specifically. If your friend drinks heavily, they aren't facing up to where they are heading from subtle hints from society and friends, and you've gotten to a stage to talk to him or her about this, only then let them know directly the bad health, bad family picture, and disrespect of company that is probably ahead of them. Remember, this should only be done with people with whom you've had a long-standing relationship with and will continue to have a long standing relationship. The shorter and weaker the relationship, the more "love quota" in the "grace bank" you need to meet first before constructively criticizing.


  • Keep the discussion fairly light the first time. As time goes by and you and your friend(s) talk more about it, you can delve a little deeper.
  • A quiet, solid faith shows. If you can't be rattled, casual onlookers will know your faith is strong and deep. You don't have to shout to be heard.
  • Showing your friend(s) the sincerity of your heart and faith is key. When they know you are not hysterical, not a freak, not a knee-jerk Bible thumper lying in wait to ambush them, they will begin to trust that these discussions will be productive exchanges of ideas and beliefs rather than pointless yelling matches that go nowhere.
  • Science wonks like to point to evidence. Acquaint them with the notion that there's actually quite a lot of evidence to point to the validity of a lot of the writings Christianity is based upon. Also point to Professor Stephen Hawking, the greatest physicist of our (and maybe ALL) time: He says based on the evidence he's seen, he cannot rule out the existence of God. Do a little research to help bolster your confidence in this area.
  • As a Christian, you stand for Jesus wherever you go. Make sure what you show people is a good example. Being human is permitted, however if you drink alcohol, cuss like a sailor, or flirt with your friends' wives, you will not be taken seriously. Likewise, if you seem to be prudish, easily offended, or self-righteous, you might as well not even bother. Just be cool, hang with your friends, and talk to them honestly without preaching.
  • Wait for the right circumstances. Don't let your own interest in a subject supersede whatever may be happening emotionally with the other person at the time. Often, the best way to share your faith is to "just be there" for another person.
  • Try to avoid charging into political discussions touching on religious ideas: abortion, gay marriage, and the like. If you wish to contribute to such talks, be sure to allow the discussion to be a give and take. Sometimes, these discussions can be winning in surprising ways, but it's best if you join in, rather than starting it.


  • Do NOT ambush people. Drawing others into a religious discussion is risky - if you make them feel like they were tricked or duped, you will end the discussion there, forever.
  • If you lose your cool, you may have lost them for good. From that point on, keep your mouth shut and don't do any MORE damage. Leave reaching them to others or to God himself. Your job is only to plant the good seed, the rest will be taken care of by the Holy Spirit; so it's up to them what they do with it.
  • Do not attempt to represent all Christians, nor represent yourself as a great example of Christianity. Humility is so important. Tell them, "I can't speak for EVERY Christian, only for myself. But for heaven's sake, don't follow me. Follow Him."

Things You'll Need

  • God's grace
  • Intelligent, well considered positions on different topics
  • Respect and kindness
  • Some understanding of Biblical principles (don't try to defend your position with, "Well, we just accept it on faith." That won't fly.)

Article Info

Categories: Christianity