“I have a great idea,” Andrew Reilly told Bridgid, his girlfriend of seven months.
“Really? What is it?”
“I just watched a video about this guy who says that Christians are really blowing it by not regularly sharing their faith. And I believe him.”
“Huh,” she replied. “So what are you going to do?” she asked, having no idea what was coming next. “Well, what I think I’m going to do is…I think we should go to a mall and start sharing Jesus with everybody there.” For the next two minutes, Bridgid actually thought about calling off the relationship. Walking up to strangers and evangelizing was out of the question. But as she looked in Andrew’s eyes, she could see he was dead serious. He gets that way when it comes to matters of faith.
About two weeks later, after Bridgid had kept the matter quiet, hoping it would all go away, it appeared that it had. Since that first day, it never came up again. Bridgid rested easy.
“Are you ready for this?” Andrew asked, as they were having dinner on a busy weekend night in the Gaslamp District.
“Ready for what?”
“Horton Plaza is right down the street,” he said. Her heart sank.
Oh no, she thought. Not that again. But being fairly new in her relationship with God, she felt a sense of wanting to be obedient to what He seemed to be putting in front of her. Again. So she reluctantly agreed, and they both made their way over to Horton Plaza, Andrew beaming with excitement, Bridgid walking a little slower than normal.
It was there that something extraordinary happened. In sharing with people at the mall that night, they both felt God use them in ways that helped define their own strengths to each other—and helped them to feel even more attracted to those strengths. Bridgid, lovely and warm, had an ease about her that seemed to make people feel comfortable right away.
Andrew, who is teeming with biblical knowledge and an apologetics nut, was great at taking the conversations deep and keeping them relevant. That night ended up being a success, not because they led many people to Christ, which they didn’t, but because it was a mountain they climbed together, and the joy they felt in their hearts seemed to confirm that something amazing had just happened—they had found their calling as Christians.
Six-and-a-half years later, Bridgid and Andrew, now married, go to the mall every Saturday and engage people in conversations about Christ as they ask these specific questions: 1) When you die, is there anything beyond this life? How will you end up there? 2) Do you believe the universe has a beginning? What was it? 3) Do you feel there is meaning to your life?
They have heard every answer under the sun, having talked to thousands of people, from twenty teenagers at once, to World War II veterans, to homeless people, to a survivor of the Nazi concentration camps, to atheists, addicts, and Christians who, after speaking with them, felt moved to be bolder in their witnessing. They have also heard every rejection, and have even been kicked off the mall premises by security.
But in all that time, they have rarely missed a Saturday. And if all goes according to plan, they will spend every Saturday for the rest of their lives asking the big questions in life.
“There is too much good in it,” says Bridgid. “We are touching people for Christ. We are using our design. And God seems to bring us closer to each other every time we do it. Why would we ever give something like that up?”
How did someone share their faith with you and what was the result? Tell us at [email protected].
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