It is nice to know that there are other people thinking about different ways to address evangelism and relationships within our world and culture.
In particular, this post from Neue talks about older versions of evangelism and recognizing that it did work, though not vigorously. The article sets up the conflict between schools of thought that favor speaking or acting as the proper and most effective methods for evangelism.
As I have previously discussed in my post on “Diverse Social Commitment,” the conclusion is that the closer relationships in which the writer was already engaged were neglected due to his involvement in the evangelism group. To make the point clearer, it was in the friendships with people he had already established where he had the highest potential for influence.
However, do not miss this point: an integration of action and words is not only the most effective, but they co-exist in genuine and authentic relationship.
Relationship, though, is not a strategy for evangelism, but an end in and of itself. Relationship strengthens and challenges the most when it involves people of different perspectives and backgrounds. The goal of relationship can never be getting the other person to see my point of view and still be authentic and genuine.
Christians have not cornered the market on truth just because Jesus has. In relationship we have the opportunity and responsibility to change and be changed by the other person. Seek the truth in others and they will in turn seek the truth within you.