Stockton-on-Tees Town Centre Market, Northumberland, England. Photo by Stockton Borough Council.

but sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts, always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you, yet with gentleness and reverence; and keep a good conscience so that in the thing in which you are slandered, those who revile your good behavior in Christ will be put to shame. For it is better, if God should will it so, that you suffer for doing what is right rather than for doing what is wrong.

1 Peter 3:15-17 (NASB)

I remember a time about twenty-four years ago I stood on Stockton High Street on market day  with a few other young men and shared the gospel. I had a brief taster of street evangelism previously in the Salvation Army in the 1980s. In the picture above we stood in the left of the picture, at the top of the main market walkway which is a prime position to speak to folk as they enter or leave the market. We took turns about sharing a word of testimony or a gospel verse, and mingling with the bystanders to chat or pray with them. It was a thrilling day filled with both sincere and strong discussions, we prepared beforehand with a prayer and Bible reading at the church – it was important to be ready spiritually. On that day I discovered that using people skills learned in sales work was priceless when sharing Jesus with strangers; these gifts were God given for such a time as this day in Stockton. I went on to do more street evangelism in future years, in parts of Fife. 

Due to health constraints and family duties these days are in the past now, but I still seek opportunities every day to share some Good News with individuals I meet. When I see new ways of sharing, either in articles or videos, my heart thumps a bit faster with excitement. I see the work of evangelism not just as sharing, but also as a way of explaining/defending the hope of Christ that others see in me. Just as if I was trying to sell a product in my past, the gospel must be shared with care, but yet more care since it is a life changing message! In my opinion sharing Jesus is 70% listening, 20% showing love and 10% speaking – in this unselfish approach success isn’t completely guaranteed, but does have a good chance.

Dear reader, are you able to share Jesus with others? Don’t panic, it doesn’t require preaching but only the ability to share a single verse or testimony of how Jesus helps you. Even if you are shy, at the end of your conversation saying “can I give you this?” and handing a tract over is great work for Jesus. I recently watched a movie called “The Letter Writer” about an elderly man in a care home who wrote encouraging letters to strangers picked out of the telephone directory; what an inspiring story that was! It set light to an idea in my heart to do the same with notelet cards with folk I don’t know yet in church – please pray for my outreach with this in 2022. What ideas has God given you recently to share hope with others, that you may know or not know?


45 thoughts on “Defending Your Hope!

  1. Howdy brother. I pray with you for your evangelism this year.

    Love this: “In my opinion sharing Jesus is 70% listening, 20% showing love and 10% speaking – in this unselfish approach success isn’t completely guaranteed, but does have a good chance.” Serving others through evangelism is about listening.

    I have found that sometimes just a simple “Is there something I can pray with you about?” will open others up. Many times wonderful opportunities come forward. Sometimes it is “I do not believe in prayer (or Jesus)” but that is okay.


    Liked by 3 people

    1. I like that question Michael, but sadly I think it would be frowned upon in the UK with Brits being certainly more reserved than other nations. Thank you for your continued support and encouragement brother, God bless you this weekend. 🙏

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I like your ratios of listening , loving, and speaking, brother! They will know we are Christians by our love. There’s also much to me commended for feeding the hungry, clothing the naked, and otherwise helping those less fortunate than ourselves. In short, sharing the gospel means doing the things that Jesus Himself would do. God Bless!

    Liked by 5 people

      1. A pastor friend says a better question is, “What DID Jesus do?” My world is a different place than the one Christ walked. But then again, it isn’t. Your personal testimonies are my favorite posts on your blog, brother. Keep up the God work!

        Liked by 1 person

  3. I thought about that movie the other day with your post on handwritten cards. I will pray for you with defending your hope in 2022! May we all be bold and motivated to share Jesus as the time is getting shorter. I am so thankful for you, Alan!

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Thank you very much for sharing the ways of telling others about the saviour.I like your idea of sharing a little thought through notelet cards with unknown folks of the church.God be with you in your blessed endeavor.Take care and pray for my family members .🙏💝💐

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you for your encouragement brother, your comments are indeed precious. May our Father God be with you, His Spirit working in and through all that you do, may the blessings of His riches be upon you and your family meeting every need that you have right now, on this Lord’s Day let the Father’s Love shower you from above and around you all, and His Word be a feast for your eyes and soul. Amen. 🙏


  5. GOD be with you and HIS leading as to how and who. 2011 Once in my life God told me to Follow Him ……..It was in the aftermath of the worst flood in our Nation’s history. Queensland under water was an area larger than Texas in USA. What He told me to do and how I was led by Him was not with preaching, sharing of tracts but in a way that before so many thought was “Silly”. but after were astonished.
    I have written this as a whole chapter in my Memoirs SHAFTS OF GOLD, God is truly awesome. But He must inspire and lead, I look forward to your update.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Thank you for your faithfulness Alan. You really are an inspiration.

    I have been thinking a lot about the great commission of late, and how it is our primary duty as Christians. This is really encourage me to press on with that and I found your 70/20/10 approach very helpful to.

    Thank you

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you for your kind words of encouragement brother Andy. The 70/20/10 happened in a very sudden way in the post, looking for a way to describe 1-2-1 evangelism. May our Father God bless you and your family on this Lord’s Day.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Barbara. I like the idea of these cards not being named for anyone, which means I am relying on the Holy Spirit to pick the right person and guide me to them. Today’s chosen sister who I won’t name has a blessed ministry but is really a quiet soul, she will be in my prayers this week. God bless you sister.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Alan, God be with you and multiply your efforts as you distribute notelet cards via the prompting of the Holy Spirit.

    I have a testimony of the power of the written word given to another. My daughter when in 5th grade (unbeknownst to me) wrote a kind note to a teacher whom she admired. Years before, this teacher had a brain tumor removed. The life-saving surgery left her face slightly disfigured and she lost sight in one eye. Long, long after my daughter was out of school, I crossed paths with this teacher in a store. We greeted one another, then the teacher proceeded to express appreciation regarding my daughter writing a note. She shared how it ministered to her just when needed. She then opened her wallet and showed me the well-worn note. She had carried it in her wallet, for years, so that she could re-read it whenever she needed encouragement. On that day, I was blessed to learn of this story. The teacher assumed I knew about it. God can work mightily through small acts of kindness and there can be ripple effects as the Spirit moves through time.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. That is an amazing testimony Manette! Your daughter is a credit to you for such wise kindness. I can only guess the amazing feelings of pride when your heard the story and saw the note. Thank you for sharing this encouragement sister, God bless you.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I felt great joy that that she was truly walking out and living her faith, as the scriptures say, “Even a child is known by his doings, whether his work be pure, and whether it be right” (Proverbs 20:11, KJV).

        Liked by 1 person

    2. That’s amazing! We don’t know the outcomes of all our actions…but God does – we just need to be faithfully loving those God puts in front of us.

      Thanks for sharing this testimony. It’s super simple and super encouraging!!

      Sharing God’s love doesn’t need to be complex!

      Andy B

      Liked by 2 people

  8. Alan the first thing I saw when I opened this post was your photo and I think I have been there! Or at least a very similar English village (they do look a lot alike!) I love your idea of writing notelets to encourage others. The written word is powerful as a means of evangelism. For example I know some of my unsaved family members read my blog. So even though they won’t let me talk to them about Jesus, they are reading about my journey with Him, and who knows what the Holy Spirit will do with that!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Jo, that is excellent that some of your family read your blog; we indeed pray that His Spirit will work on them through your excellent writing. I know that my son sometimes reads too. The written word is powerful and not easily forgotten, praise God.

      Liked by 1 person

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