Relationship vs Religion

Loving relationships lead to new life in Christ.

“The evil one was there, and he wanted my skin. But the Lord took away my heartache,” said Jane.* The young woman was one of three people baptized recently at Eglise Protestante Evangélique de Limoges, an Alliance church plant in France led by Ray and Carol Simon, Alliance international workers.

The new believers were introduced to Jesus by people who attend the church. “Most of our outreach is based on individual relationships, which seem to work best in our small church setting,” said Carol.

One member, Fred,* “uses every opportunity to share his faith with others,” said Carol, “which is how Jane was introduced to the gospel. Several challenging life events led her to fall into depression and experience suicidal thoughts. So, Fred’s friendship was God’s perfect timing for this broken woman.”

Fred and his wife, Isabel,* live next door to Jane. When she moved in, Fred introduced himself and helped her hang shelves in the garage. As they worked, he noticed objects related to the occult, so he told her about Jesus and the difference between good and evil.

Over time, Jane developed a close bond with Fred and Isabel. As the couple, along with the Simons, mentored Jane and shared God’s love for her, she decided to leave her pagan practices to follow Christ and be baptized. She refers to Fred and Isabel as her symbolic godparents. “I am no longer alone,” she said. “I know God is here for me, and I’m astonished at what He is doing in my life.”

Relational Living

In order to make connections outside the church, Carol teaches English classes and attends an art class. Another couple hosts a social gathering of young adults and university students in a weekly discussion group, where believers and their unchurched friends discuss current issues in light of biblical truths.

“We also host seasonal events that are geared to reaching nonbelieving family members and friends, such as Easter and Christmas programs, singing at a local geriatric hospital, or concerts and special speakers,” Carol explained. “These events are gateways to build relationships and share the hope of Jesus.”

The baptisms were witnessed by friends and family of the new believers. “The entire service glorified our Lord Jesus Christ!” said Ray. “Some commented that they had never experienced anything like that before. One visitor said that he now understands the difference between religion and relationship.”

*names changed


Pray that the new believers in Limoges will go and make disciples in their community. Pray, too, for Alliance international workers serving among a secular, postmodern population in Western Europe.

Use the weekly Alliance Prayer Requests to join the Alliance family in praying for our teams in France and worldwide, who serve in often challenging circumstances that require Holy Spirit–inspired perseverance, wisdom, and creativity in demonstrating God’s love to those who don’t know Him.


Get Involved...


We cannot “Live the Call Together” unless prayer is central to all we do.
Pray with us »


Is God calling you to service? We’re here to help you connect your passion with God’s purpose.
Serve with The Alliance »


Help build Christ’s Church by supporting the ministry and workers of The Alliance.
Give today »