2020 Fair Report (Pandemic Edition)

By Justin Johnson

During a normal summer, some grace ambassadors in Swayzee go door to door and attend multiple county fairs with the gospel.

The pandemic and government restrictions have made this year anything but normal.

Fairs all over the country were cancelled including two of ours.

However, there was a moment after the lockdowns and before the mask mandates where a neighboring county was able to host their county fair and we were able to meet and greet the community.

There were minor adjustments due to the circumstances: the animals were not allowed to stay overnight. This helped us all breathe a little better.

How do you evangelize during a pandemic? Prudently.

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We took the opportunity to print new tracts plainly addressing COVID and the cultural crisis that had unfolded. These were timely and used to communicate the power of God found in the gospel of Christ.

While people’s physical condition is extremely important, so is their spiritual condition as has been evident from the large number of people infected with fear, anxiety, depression, and suicidal tendencies this year.

One thing that we can learn from our nationwide social distancing experiment is that people need to be social. Watching people from a distance is not the same as interacting. This is one more reason lifestyle evangelism fails compared to Biblical evangelism.

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Lifestyle evangelism is the idea that if we live good lives then people will come to us and ask why, and then we can tell them the gospel.

Biblical evangelism is proactive giving the gospel to people through and preaching and teaching.

Handing out tracts and initiating conversations about the gospel is mocked by those that practice lifestyle evangelism. They have been told that lifestyle evangelism works better (it doesn’t).

Lockdowns, social distancing, and masks destroy lifestyle evangelism. No one will come to you to see how you are living and ask you why. Everyone is staying home. The new lifestyle is staying away from people.

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Tracts work very well during times such as these. They require no talking (so masks won’t get in the way). The length of two extended arms is almost exactly six feet (social distancing, check!), and if people must stay home they can be mailed!

Tracts still work even when our lifestyle has changed and everyone is keeping their distance.

While our methods and circumstances can change, what does not is our mission to see souls saved and saints edified. We will continue our evangelism work taking opportunities with the resources we have to go to people with the always necessary message of Jesus Christ according to the revelation of the mystery.

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Many came by our booth and grabbed thousands of resources, because we showed up.

What a joy it is every year to minister to new people the saving message of Jesus Christ, his cross, and sufficient grace.

Salvation is essential. Gospel communication is essential. Evangelism is essential!

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Published: September 5, 2020
Last Modified: April 26, 2021
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