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  • July 11, 2014 - Reflections

    By Jean S. Horner
    The other day while walking down a corridor in a public building, I saw what appeared to be someone walking toward me. On coming closer, I found it was my own reflection in a huge mirror. For a moment it frightened me. Somehow a full-length reflection of one’s self is a startling thing. ...



Connections: Todd Bishop

The Message Matters

Pastor Todd Bishop and the congregation of The Point Church (AG) have a heart to reach the community of Westbury, N.Y., with a life-altering gospel message. Bishop is committed to church planting as an integral tool in this mission. But, as he recently told Managing Editor Scott Harrup, he believes the fundamental component of successful community evangelism is the personal story of every follower of Christ.

evangel: How does your community mirror today’s culture?
BISHOP:
Westbury itself was founded by four Quaker families for one purpose: religious expression. We were shocked to discover this on the local Chamber of Commerce website as we were doing our research to establish The Point Church. But the year we started our church, four other churches tried to start and all four closed within six months. Probably the biggest reflection of our society is the contrast between surface religion and the reality that people don’t think they need God. People here don’t see their need for Him.


evangel: How should followers of Christ respond to this reality?
BISHOP:
With action. I think a lot of people hide behind their prayers. It’s great to pray that God would do a great work in our country and our world, but if we stop at prayer, we don’t move to that next step of action. We’re not responding the way Christ would ask us to respond. How do we respond? We respond by sharing our faith, by being part of a faith community that’s engaging lost people, by taking the opportunity that’s in front of us. We need to share our story with someone, befriend a pre-Christian and make sure they can see Christ through our lives and our behaviors.


evangel: What motivates you to communicate the gospel personally?
BISHOP:
Hell — it’s as simple as that. I was raised in a very traditional Assemblies of God church, and hell was talked about. There is an eternity without Christ that is hell, and people are going there unless we carry out this mission. That motivates me. I see people who could be destined for hell all around me every day. Each is a face, not just a statistic or a number. I’ll walk by someone at the grocery store and wonder, Is this person right with God? Will they be ready to meet Jesus should their life end? Hell is real, and God loves people too much to have them go there. That’s what should motivate us.


evangel: Can you describe a recent encounter where you shared your faith?
BISHOP:
Just the other day, I was walking out of our office building, which we share with other businesses. I met a guy coming out of the doctor’s office. I said, “Hey, how you doing? It’s a great day to be alive!” That sparked a 45-minute painful conversation. He was cursing up a storm. But I listened, and later had the opportunity to meet his wife, who is very sick. As we talked, they were almost in tears. She said, “We haven’t been in church in 11 years. Just you saying hi to my husband has opened us again to the idea of going to church.”


evangel: What keeps us from sharing our faith?
BISHOP:
What holds us back is really a lack of belief that God could use my voice, my life, to make a difference in someone’s life. If I believe this message matters so much, I have to share it. I can’t be silent with this. I think it always comes down to belief. It’s more than fear of failure; it’s more than worrying that someone might ridicule us. It really comes down to if I believe this message, it doesn’t matter what they do to me.

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