03
Jul
19

Vegan Evangelism

Vegan pizzaMy niece taught me something about evangelism the other day.

And I don’t think she even realized she was holding class.

This is not the new college graduate niece I wrote about earlier (in a blog post you can find here). This is her sister, Natalie.

You see, Natalie is a vegan.

She is also very serious about following her vegan diet… to the point that she has her own dedicated section of the refrigerator and a shelf or two in the pantry of her parents’ kitchen on which to store her food.

I have known other vegans in my life. Most of the time I have experienced them as passionate to the point of being a tad overbearing in their advocacy of veganism.

I have also – VERY briefly – toyed with the question of whether I might benefit from switching to an entirely plant-based diet… a thought that quickly fades away the second someone in my zip code begins grilling steak outdoors.

After spending several days in Natalie’s vicinity, especially at mealtimes, I began thinking seriously about making much more of an effort to go meatless, at least a couple of days every week…

… all because of the effectiveness of Natalie’s vegan evangelism.

In contrast to many other styles of evangelism you might be familiar with, Natalie’s was very quiet.

She didn’t preach. She didn’t berate. She didn’t drone on and on about the amazing health benefits of the plant-based diet. She didn’t throw a massive guilt trip on Joan and me about our willful “murder” of innocent cows, chickens, and fish.

She just went about her business… mashing up chickpeas, blending tofu and various spices, toasting bread, and quietly enjoying herself.

During our visit, Natalie just quietly radiated a sort of health and joy that was magnetic. It made me want to turn toward her and ask questions about her diet, which she answered thoroughly and politely.

It was her conviction, combined with her non-pushy, non-anxious demeanor that very effectively drew me more closely to thinking I might want to give this way of eating a serious look.

And then I wondered; “What if Christians took this same approach to OUR evangelism?” I wonder if we might have the same effect on the people around us that Natalie had on me?

  • What if we just LIVED our faith and let our lives speak for themselves?
  • What if we declined to browbeat, guilt-trip, or shame our friends and family members into believing?
  • What if we tried something like ATTRACTING rather than COERCING people to investigate the life-changing claims of our Lord and Savior?
  • What if we gave up the notion that it is WE who do the changing of people’s hearts and remember it is something much more ephemeral and outside our direct control? (Can you say “Holy Spirit”?)

 

Hmmmm. I don’t know. Sounds way too simple, doesn’t it?


5 Responses to “Vegan Evangelism”


  1. July 3, 2019 at 3:29 pm

    GREAT suggestion! I suspect that a lot of us might have a hard time with it because we are NOT living the Christian life as we should. If we aren’t spending time with Him early in the day, if we aren’t trusting Him with our problems, or thanking Him when things are going well, how is anyone supposed to see the “peace of God” in us? (Answer: they won’t. We’ll be stressed out and discontent.) You’re right. When we reflect that kind of peace, joy, and contentment, we won’t have to look for people to witness to, they’ll come to us and ask. The all we have to do is answer the questions. Yes, it does seem almost too easy!

  2. July 6, 2019 at 4:16 am

    Quiet action can be very powerful!

  3. 5 Warren Molton
    July 6, 2019 at 10:08 am

    PS: Per your last line:

    Like Mother Teresa, who had her so-called crisis of faith as Time called it, admitting that she felt “cut of from God” for the last fifty years of her life, and still embodied a God of love and did loving things for God’s creatures. I will send you my latest poem, first written in 2003, and rewritten recently in my last iteration, I hope. It was first written before Mother Teresa’s testimony and confession. I have not yet submitted this one to my editor or readers, so you, after Dian, are the first to see it. Your critique, Mr. Editor, would be appreciated.

    I enjoyed your blog as always.

    Thanks,

    Warren


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