The Art of Conversation
Starting a Spiritual Conversation Naturally
If you’ve ever left a conversation feeling flat, you’re not alone. But why is that? Why are some conversations filled with laughter, banter, hope and connection-whilst others are dry, boring, superficial and stale?
Never been short on an opinion, I’ve got a few theories why. But first, let me entice you with a sandwich. Say what? Where is this chick going? you ask.
There’s nothing like a moist BLT (Bacon, Lettuce Tomato) sandwich, but those first few bites of the crust can be a bit dry. However, that’s a necessary part of getting to the good bit-the crispy bacon, mayo and filling!
Conversation can be like that. We need to exchange the pleasant greetings and superficial chit chat before we get to the deep and meaningful. So let’s make like a removalist and unpack the ingredients of a good conversation. I’m going to call it SOS. Normally short for Save Our Souls: today it’s also an acronym for Situation Questions, Opportunity Questions and Spiritual Questions.
1.Situational Questions. This is the crusty bit. These are questions like;
Have you been here long?
Where are you staying?
What do you think of …?
These questions are a starting point, and for the intuitive, their answers give a great deal of meaning. Answers like, “I’m new to the area”, can indicate they may be feeling isolated and lonely and needing a friend!
2.Opportunity Questions. These are questions which give you an opportunity to help your new buddy! Questions like;
Are you looking for a job?
Do you know many people?
What do you like to do?
These use of these questions are twofold, firstly people can see your heart to help and love! Go go in God! And secondly, they may uncover a need that they have never articulated and after verbalising, they realise it’s a top priority! Now put on your super cape christian and go help a wounded soldier! Do you know anyone else in the same situation? Introduce them. Do you have any helpful advice or sources? Suggest some. Have you been in the same tricky dilemma? Share your vulnerable story!
This stage in the conversation is critical because you are holding each other’s heart. The heart is a delicate organ and must be treated with sensitivity and respect, when both parties do this, we feel safe and willing to share more of ourselves.
Once your new buddy has had a peek into your heart, and hopefully seen that you are FOR them, and NOT for YOURSELF and YOUR NEEDS (-like to feel super important, or in charge). Then maybe you’ve developed enough trust to ask eternal questions like;
What do you think about the spiritual world?
Have you ever prayed?
Do you have a faith?
Now you are both safe to exchange your ideas and opinions no matter what each person believes. And this is where God is found. If the answer is a negative confession, don’t stress, God’s bigger than that.
One time my hubby asked me a question, “Why don’t you get your motorbike licence Vetti?”
My response was swift and sure. “No bloody way, are you kidding?”
But I went away and mulled it over. I reasoned with myself the pros and cons. After 6 weeks, I boldly say to hubby, “I’m getting my motorbike licence.” He had no idea that I’d changed my mind over those 6 weeks. But it took a ‘seed,’ through questioning, to start a spark that ignited into full blown action.
And that friends, is what God says in 1 Corinthians 3:6-7, “I planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the growth. So neither he who plants nor he who waters is anything, but only God who gives the growth.”
A pregnant woman doesn’t really grow the baby, she doesn’t put the arms and legs together, make the organs work-that’s what God does. But the woman does make sure she feeds and waters her baby with good nutrition and lifestyle. But that baby would NEVER be there without the husband’s SEED. We need to plant a SEED that God can grow. Otherwise, we are just making love, and while that’s okay, it’s not making NEW LIFE and NEW BIRTH! And don’t we all love new bubba’s?
Okay, I’m hungry now, gunna make myself a BLT.
Oh, and if you need more examples of questions to ask, our Book “Heaven Can’t Wait” has them at the end of each Chapter. This is now available from Koorong at $5.99 online and $4.99 in store.