The Eager Conversationalist/Spiritual Conversation Curve Workshops
By: Jason Broge and Don Everts
Drawing on Barna Group data contained in the 2018 monograph Spiritual Conversations in the Digital Age, Lutheran Hour Ministries is offering two workshops: the first, Eager Conversationalists, examines spiritual conversations. It offers insights to help us become more intentional-more eager-to engage in spiritual conversations with others. The second, The Spiritual Conversation Curve, offers help in getting past conversational hurdles. This is possible when we focus on someone's "spiritual posture," so as not to impose a conversation that's forced or ill-timed.
Spiritual Conversations in the Digital Age, a monograph based on Barna Group research, revealed something: people talk less about spiritual matters than they used to. Whatever the reasons for this reluctance, research shows there are ample benefits to including God in our conversations. Two workshops address the data and offer ways for us to be better spiritual conversationalists. Dr. Jason Broge, director of design and development for LHM's Global Ministries, hosts Eager Conversationalists: A Hopeful Look at What Prepares Christians for Spiritual Conversations, and Don Everts, manager of content development for LHM, hosts The Spiritual Conversation Curve: A Practical Tool for Reluctant Witnesses
Eager Conversationalists introduces the EAGER Profile Inventory, a self-evaluation tool participants can use to assess their level of willingness to engage in spiritual conversations. Barna data from 25 years ago shows that Christians took more responsibility to share their faith. Not so today as those numbers are in decline. Completing an EAGER Profile Inventory helps believers assess their character traits and spiritual habits which then factor into their willingness to have spiritual conversations. The good news is we can all become more intentional in our outreach and actually enjoy sharing Jesus with others when we do.
The Spiritual Conversation Curve is where the rubber hits the road. "What should I talk about?" "How will I respond to their questions?" "What if I don't know the answer?" These queries are natural. What's important, Everts says, is this: "It helps if we are in some way prepared to lean into those moments." The Spiritual Conversation Curve is crucial here as it lets us assess if the person we're speaking with is unreceptive, receptive, or seeking. We can then gauge our words to graciously adapt to their "spiritual posture," keeping our faith discussions open and comfortable.
To encourage yourSpiritual Conversations in the Digital Age monograph; the two-workshop DVD; a copy of The Reluctant Witness; six Project Connect booklets-three on Jesus, an illustrated kids' booklet, and one on the Spiritual Conversation Curve and another on communicating digitally; along with a 25-count pack of Spiritual Conversation Curve Cards. You can go to lhm.org/conversations to find out more about this great resource. To order a starter kit for $37 go to https://www.lhmgift.org/storefront/