You know that feeling that someone is watching you? The hair on your arms and neck stand up while you cautiously scope the area searching for whoever is observing you? When people know you are a Christian, they watch. They want to see how you will handle the guy who cuts you off on the freeway, the wrong order in the restaurant, the co-worker who repeatedly comes in late extending your shift just a little bit longer every single day. Your actions in the little situations add up and form their perspective of Christians, and ultimately Christ.
Point in case. Recently several of my co-workers were conversing about family when one of the ladies made a shocking, insensitive remark about her dying mother. No one knew how to respond because no one understood the lack of compassion. The offending party never noticed but continued digging a deeper hole. Hours later after she left, everyone else was still upset over the remark. Five of the seven people in the conversation had all lost their mothers prematurely and all felt the careless attack had been aimed at them and their grieving periods. Tragically, the offensive comment had been made by a preacher’s wife. One new believer said “I thought preachers and their family were supposed to have compassion.” Another co-worker piped in, “Yeah, that’s why I avoid church. What’s the point when the people there don’t even love their own families?”
Brothers and sisters, we live in the world. The people we come in contact with hear our words and judge them by our actions. We need to remain conscious of this fact every moment of every day. We need to be the Bible they are not reading; we need to show the love they haven’t yet accepted. I John 4:7-12 instructs us to show God’s love by our love. “Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God. He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love. In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him. Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we ought also to love one another. No man hath seen God at any time. If we love one another, God dwelleth in us, and his love is perfected in us.”
As a Christian, I have grieved over the situation I described previously. I have examined my own life and wondered if inadvertently I have pushed people away from Christ. I encourage every believer to scour your words and actions, to see yourself as non-Christians and new believers see you. Are you speaking life or destruction, love or pain, hope or hopelessness? Today, as you go about your normal day, remember people are watching and waiting to see who you truly are. Remember to be the salt and light (Matthew 5:13-16), to season the lives of those around you with good flavoring and to live in a way that reflects the True Light!