On with the show.
Doing some research for a potential book on evangelization, I had a wild thought yesterday.
Selling real estate is not like selling shoes. (That was not the wild thought.) You can buy many pairs of shoes in a year, but you buy houses very rarely. The decision to buy a house is a momentous one. Part of the purchase process is developing rapport with the realtor and learning to trust them. From the sales point of view, the way you approach the customer is very different, too, for obvious reasons.
Coming to faith in Christ is much more like buying real estate than buying a pair of shoes.
Wild thought: You know those people who come to your door and ask, "Can I talk to you about Jesus?" It's the wrong question. The right question to ask is, "Can I talk to you about you?"
A good salesman is there to help the prospect solve one or more of their problems. That's it. If your product scratches that itch, you make the sale. If it doesn't, you still want to have sincere concern before moving on to the next prospect. If you're really good, you will do your best to suggest alternative solutions that will work better for the prospect.
When the prospect believes you have their best interests at heart, they're much more likely to buy from you next time. You've gotten rid of the largest obstacle of all to selling big-ticket items: a lack of trust.
In terms of evangelization, genuine care for the prospect's problems is crucial for another reason - it's what Jesus told you to do above all else. If you're just another salesman with an answer for every objection, you've missed the point and done more than damage your trust, you've violated the central tenet of the faith.
Don't do that.
I tossed the salad yesterday. By that, I mean that I rotated the leaves in the Momma Daisy Memorial Chamber of Doom Tobacco Fermenter. I should have done it days ago. The leaves on the top were crispy critters. The moisture had evaporated from the t-shirt rags covering them and they had dried out completely.
Hopefully I haven't ruined them. They represent about a year of work. There's a lesson right there about farming. If you screw up at any stage, you can wreck everything and lose a ton of invested labor.