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Witnessing and the
Fear of looking Ridiculous

Abstract: Many feel witnessing causes them to look ridiculous. This is a legitimate fear, IF witnessing is about looking ridiculous. It ISN’T! Witnessing should be done by nice, normal, caring people, in the context of normal life.

Jimmy’s “Dead to public opinion” red jersey, and beating tambourines going down the street, which was so mortifying to WP Nicholas, is the way that more than one person has viewed witnessing, and therefore stayed clear of witnessing.

As we explore some of the “fear of man” reasons encountered in witnessing, the fear of looking ridiculous is certainly one of them.

I am not sure this fear is legitimate since most of the time I hope our witnessing is more than wearing a jersey that communicates strange behavior, or beating tambourines going down the street. Serious people are not going to be too attracted by this kind of witnessing. Granted at times, this method has apparently been sometimes used, and blessed by God, and I certainly don’t fault those that do, but I don’t think it should be the main way we witness-and I say this respectfully-if at all.

Most of the time our witnessing should be with our neighbors, our classmates, our work colleagues, and should be natural and conducted in the context of positive relationships. And we should come across as normal thinking NICE people as much as possible. They may think we are strange for being Christians, they may think we are strange for being members of a particular denomination, but we shouldn’t give them reasons to justify their concerns and suspicions.

If you consider the way Jesus worked, you never find him sending His disciples down the street wearing strange clothes, playing strange music, and causing the people of His day to think less of the kingdom of His Father. Neither should we! We get the distinct sense that people loved being with Jesus, particularly those who seemed far from God (Note for example the woman at the well John 4).

I think it should be the same for us. Hopefully our lives and demeanor will go before us, opening the door for legitimate, life-changing, witnessing.

So, don’t let the fear of looking ridiculous hold you back from witnessing. Rarely will you look ridiculous if you are witnessing the way Jesus wants you to witness.

Now, please don’t misunderstand, I respect those that work with the Salvation Army and the way they were working in 1900, but their method wasn’t the only way or and preferred way, then or now!. Seek Jesus’ way, and I think you will find a receptive audience, AND YOU WON’T COME ACROSS AS RIDICULOUS!

What do you think?

Happy witnessing.


PS: Please continue to invite others to join our group, and please share these short readings on witnessing with others. Remember “no commercial use” and please ask permission for other uses.