Witnessing Through Investigative Reporting
God has positioned you among specific people to share the Gospel.
Every spring, I attend an annual media industry conference where I pick up valuable tips for professional and personal development. In 2014, I participated in a workshop about investigative reporting. Although most people won’t pursue a career in journalism, there were a few points that I realized also apply to sharing the gospel, no matter who you are.
Three basic principles of good reporting are telling the truth, sharing information, and shedding light on stories.
As Jesus’ witnesses, we are called to bring the truth of the gospel to the people around us. When we are well equipped with biblical knowledge, we can share valuable, life-changing information about Jesus. We can tell people true stories of how God has transformed lives, beginning with our own.
If this sounds overly simple, it’s probably because we have complicated Christianity to the point that people don’t “get” it. We have forgotten how to be witnesses. We’ve relegated the job of evangelism and witnessing to pastors and missionaries so that we can get on with our own lives.
However, the Great Commission was given to the entire Church—to the body of Christ and not only to the legs or the mouth or the hands. One might argue that Jesus instructed only His disciples to spread the gospel, yet because the Great Commission told them to teach disciples to obey everything they were taught by Jesus, it is a perpetual charge to all believers.
First, we need to tell the truth. Yet, as Pilate asked, what is truth? We live in a world that tends to reject absolutes and wants to believe that truth is relative, but people are yearning to find something they can bank their hope and trust on. Jesus declared that He is the truth and told the believing Jews: “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free” (John 8:31-32). We have direct access to the truth. How can we keep it to ourselves when the world desperately needs it?
Second, we need to share information. It’s not enough to simply tell people that they need to trust in Jesus and be born-again to go to heaven. That’s the truth, but it doesn’t give the complete, rich story of God’s redemption of man, from the time of creation to the birth, death, resurrection and ascension of Jesus, to the work He is doing in people’s lives today. Our own hearts and minds need to be so saturated with God’s Word, with sound doctrine, and with a clear understanding of what we believe and why, that it becomes second nature to enthusiastically share what we know with others.
Third, we need to shed light on stories. Whether it’s bringing a biblical perspective to world events, sharing a personal testimony, or helping someone cope with a difficulty by using Scripture to reveal God’s love for this person, we can bring clarity and godly insight into the confusion many people are facing today. The Bible isn’t only a road map to salvation, it is also a limitless source of help and guidance in our everyday lives. We can make God’s Word come alive to people when we allow it to transform our own lives.
God has positioned you among specific people with whom you have the unique privilege of sharing the gospel. Just tell the truth, share what you know, and shine your light. The Holy Spirit will take care of the rest!
Ann-Margret is a full-time writer living in Montreal, Quebec. Her fourth devotional book for tween girls, Truth, Dare, Double Dare, hit stores in October 2014. Visit www.annhovsepian.wordpress.com or www.facebook.com/ann.hovsepian.author.
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