Hi, Luna. First and foremost- thanks for having the courage to ask your question here and create this thread where we can study together. It’s something I struggle a good bit with, too.
We are made as relational creatures, yet this world’s relationships are only a very dim mirror to draw us to seek the pure and perfect love of Christ. While we can sometimes feel like we have to “earn” relationships with others by saying and doing the right things, we actually rejoice in these moments of struggle as a reminder our relationship with Christ is one we never earn. And while it is human nature to find people who think like us for friendships, we can rejoice that Christ deliberately sought us out in our wretched state, far different from His own perfection.
Abdu Murray had an interesting response to the need for apologetics. I love his analogy of attending a orchestra concert. Additionally, Vince Vitale and Michael Ramsden have good resources on starting conversations. In my own life, I’ve found it helpful to get into the “Why” of people think, without formally letting others know I’m guiding towards Christian topics. Why is someone working towards a specific goal at school, and why will it give them satisfaction? Amidst political conversations, how does identity influence our positions and what even is identity in the first place? etc. When we start to look for meaning in our lives, it’s hard to avoid Christ. As we plant seeds of wondering in others’ mind, it can challenge them to think more deeply about their own faith.
I’m starting to notice many churches have a missed opportunity in the “Ministry of the Back Pew.” While the engaged folks tend to sit in the middle or the front and are often welcomed in to join others, there is a quiet string of individuals in the back who are either shy or sliding in late because something in their life was going crazy that day. These are the folks who really need to feel the family of Christ. We can rejoice they still came to learn about and worship Christ, but I wonder what it would look like if some mature Christians deliberately sat in the back and engaged these folks in conversation. If you find yourself back there, inviting some of these folks to an impromptu lunch, remembering their names, perhaps texting to ask if they’ll be sitting in the same place next week, etc. could solve a yearning in both of your hearts and start to change the culture.