When I became a Christian, I was passionate for people to know Jesus. But my attempts to communicate what He’d done for me felt pretty disastrous. After a while, I gave up trying and for about 20 years, by and large, I kept my faith to myself.

Looking back, I can see how my discouragement, fear and pride were all getting in the way, and the tragedy is that nobody called me to account for this. I felt a failure. Research shows that I’m not alone. A survey carried out by the Evangelical Alliance back in 2012 revealed that 48 per cent of Christians were too scared to talk about their faith with non-Christians. 

About 15 years ago, my friend John said, Let’s go onto the university campus and talk to some students about Jesus.” John understood my fears. He taught me from the Bible, he prayed with me, and he assured me that all I needed to do was watch, listen and learn.

I didn’t have to say a thing! I liked the sound of that! So, one Monday, we went and John had some amazing conversations – I even opened my mouth on the odd occasion. We kept this up for a few Mondays. I listened and learnt and one day John said that I was going to do the talking next time and he would pray.


The following Monday, we were due to go out on campus, and I was dreading it. I can remember standing in the shower that morning, reminding God that this was not my gift, that I was an introvert, and that I’d never studied at university and I was a fish out of water. 

I was in tears as I said to God, Lord you know I can’t do this stuff!” I sensed God say to me, I know that son – what’s your point?” Okay Lord,” I said, I’ll show up again today, but you’re going to have to do the stuff.” God said, Now you’re getting it!” 

That experience broke something in me. Over the next few Mondays, I had some great conversations with all sorts of interesting people. I was meeting people on their spiritual journeys and they were stopping to talk with me. 

I now recognise that the reasons I didn’t want to talk about my faith were not actually reasons. They were excuses. I started to take seriously the farewell speech’ of Jesus in John chapters 14 to 16. As I meditated on these verses, and chewed them over with my friends, I discovered that Jesus had put in place an amazing master plan. If I was obedient, and only did what I could do, then the Holy Spirit will do what only He can do. By keeping discipleship at the heart of his evangelism, John was simply modelling what Jesus modelled to His disciples and expected them to pass on. 

A few years ago, I was hearing stories of young people from my church who were falling away from their faith during their time at university. A survey from Fusion, a movement working with Christian students on campus, suggests that something like 73 per cent fail to commit to a local church while at university. I was determined to do something about it. 

Using an earlier version of Living & Telling, a course that embodied all the principles that John had helped me to grasp, I ran it for a group of local school leavers. Those students discovered an exciting adventure opening up before their eyes as they realised it was possible to share Jesus naturally and helpfully. One of them said it was truly inspiring” and went on to set up a national movement among Christian students. 

With my co-developer Dave Pegg, we have now run Living & Telling every summer for hundreds of local students. I have lost count of those who have said, It has changed my life”, or It was so encouraging.” But what intrigued us was that Christians of all ages wanted to do the course. 

So, over the last four years we have developed a brand-new version for anyone age 16 to 116’. With an amazing team of presenters, the 10 highly interactive video sessions are now available online and can be downloaded free of charge. Courses are rapidly popping up all over the country as whole churches start to run Living & Telling in their small groups. 

These are early days, but the feedback remains consistently encouraging. Sam Hailes, a church planter and the editor of Premier Christianity, wrote to say, I like how interactive and biblical it is.” The big challenge now it to give Living & Telling away as fast as we can.” Phil Knox, head of mission to young adults at the Evangelical Alliance, says, It has the power to change the nation.” Gavin Calver, CEO of the Evangelical Alliance, says, I wholeheartedly encourage every Christian to get involved.” 

Will you join in the adventure? Visit www​.livin​gandtelling​.org​.uk to find out more.