aW ys to share the gospel with your neighbours.
Make the most of key events and moments Christmas, Easter, moving in, strata meetings – even a quick chat as you both check the mailbox – are all chances to build a foundation for sharing our lives and the gospel. Be the neighbour who sends Christmas cards, or who takes around hot cross buns and chocolates at Easter. Hand deliver them if you can, as it’s a great chance to say “Hi”. When a new neighbour moves in, take the first step to greet them and welcome them to the street.
Spend time outside If you’re not seen by your community, you can’t get to know your community. The best opportunities I have had to get to know my neighbours have been as I’m checking my mailbox, washing the car out the front, or walking down the street with the dog or the baby.
Be an inviter Even if they say “No”, an invitation tells your neighbours that you thought about them and so is usually received positively. Whether you’re inviting them to visit your church at Christmas, or over for afternoon tea, taking the first step is often scary but a great thing to do.
Value the small moments It’s easy to get caught up in trying to convert someone and we can quickly be disappointed when we don’t get to explain who Jesus is. However, even small interactions are an opportunity to show something of who God is and how God loves his people.
Actions speak louder than words Don’t let your actions undermine the gospel message before you get to share it. Do your best to be a considerate neighbour who is SouthernCross
easy to live near. Treat all your neighbours with respect, grace and compassion, especially if they’re difficult.
Nothing happens without prayer Without God, all our efforts are in vain. Prayer is also a great place to start. Pray for the households surrounding you, for those with whom you share a fence, driveway or street. Pray for opportunities to appear, for boldness to create connections, and for soft hearts and open ears to hear the good news of Jesus and be saved.
It’s never too late to start I was feeling really defeated about four years after my husband and I moved into our first home. There were six other units in our complex and we hadn’t even had coffee with any of our neighbours – let alone invited someone to church or shared the gospel with them. I wondered whether it was even worth still living there. Maybe we had wasted all our opportunities and it would be easier to move somewhere else and start again with new neighbours. It wasn’t until the seventh and eighth years after we had moved to the complex that we had our best years of connecting and getting to know our neighbours. We would have long chats in the driveway, we were comfortable to borrow sugar and milk, and we dropped around gifts and baked goods for each other. Being a new mum at the time, I felt so looked after by my neighbours. Staying at home during the first lockdown of March 2020 also helped us deepen our friendships. It’s easy to feel like we’re getting nowhere with our neighbours but it’s never too late to start reaching out. The key principle is to build genuine connections in order to love our neighbours better. Whether we start with a prayer, a “Hello”, or a care package, there are plenty of ways to share the gospel. SC 23