Lee Strobel and Mark Mittelberg seek to convey the joy and fulfillment of personal evangelism in their new book, The Unexpected Adventure: Taking Everyday Risks to Talk With People About Jesus (Zondervan), which released earlier this month.
Written in a devotional-type format and divided into 42-day “adventures,” the book introduces readers to significant moments they’ve experienced when sharing the gospel. In the book’s introduction, Strobel calls evangelism “the missing ingredient” in the lives of many Christians who report going through times of spiritual dryness. A passion for reaching unbelievers not only translates into renewed Christian devotion but also spills over into a more dedicated focus on Bible study, prayer life, worship and dependence on God, he asserts.
“I’ve never heard anyone complain by saying, ‘My spiritual life is so dry right now; it’s like I’m living in a desert,’ and then add, ‘Oh, by the way, I’m actively trying to reach a friend for Christ,'” Strobel writes.
The pair’s stories follow the theme of “unexpected adventures”—times when the authors followed openings to talk about their faith, which in turn brought about dynamic life changes, such as the time Strobel felt compelled to witness to a co-worker who seemed reluctant to listen. Years later, he was approached by a person who’d received Christ as a result of that conversation—not the co-worker, but rather a man Strobel hadn’t even noticed was listening.
“Who could have foreseen that, except for an amazing God of grace?” Strobel asks.
The authors also address the fears and hesitancies some might have in reaching out to unbelievers. In the book’s conclusion, Mittelberg acknowledges that the adventure comes at a price.
“We all love the idea of adventure, but here’s the truth: adventure inevitably involves risk, which in turn always entails some measure of anxiety or nervousness,” he writes. “So if you’re feeling apprehensive about an outreach opportunity, it’s probably a good sign. It means you’re well on your way to experiencing real adventure.”
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