Thom Rainer outlines five stages of pre-Christian attitudes about Christianity that unbelievers inevitably populate. Ranging from the unabashedly antagonistic to the almost-there, insights into all five stages are peppered with quotes from some of the interviewees, providing a valuable resource to evangelists, who will inevitably encounter all five stages. Rainer also provides 10 reasons why some Christians do not share their faith as well as strategies for reaching individuals in each of the stages of unbelief.
The appendices include the blank survey used in this study and an inventory for assessing the stage of an individual. The mode of research design and statistical review are included as well, as is the complete statistical outlay.
In a national survey conducted by author Thom Rainer and his staff, eight out of ten unchurched men and women said they would come to churchif only someone would invite them. When and how is the next big question. Rainer helps you figure out where your neighbors, friends, and coworkers are in their spiritual quest, and how you can know who among the unchurched people in your life are receptive to Christ. In this fascinating book, Rainer identifies five faith stages that represent your running buddy, your sister-in-law, or your hairdresser. A discovery we made is that reaching lost and unchurched people is not always best accomplished with some cookie-cutter strategy, Rainer writes. The unchurched are different in how they respond to the gospel. How different? You will be amazed at the variables that exist when it comes to how open people are to the Christian message. Open this book, and open your mind and heart to the powerful new possibilities of reaching The Unchurched Next Door.
Thom S. Rainer (PhD, Southern Baptist Theological Seminary) is president and CEO of LifeWay Christian Resources in Nashville, Tennessee. He was founding dean of the Billy Graham School of Missions, Evangelism and, Church Growth at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. His many books include Surprising Insights from the Unchurched, The Unexpected Journey, and Breakout Churches.