Throughout the last several years, I have often been plagued with this thought – as Christians in the world what impact are we making? This goes beyond witnessing to someone to share Christ with them, but even to every transaction we make, every word we say, the attitude we express to our children and spouse, etc. If we hand back the dollar we were overpaid to the cashier – this speaks volumes about our commitment to integrity. If we let someone out in busy traffic – we are living out that we are not just looking out for number one but living out the Biblical mandate to think of others more highly than ourselves. Even if we aren’t evangelistic in how we speak to others , our lives are either a witness to or a mockery of Christ’s love.
My daughter has a new friend. He is a special young man, you can tell this when you first meet him. Some other teens that we have met tell us that he is the VP of the CIA (Christians in Action) club at school. He used to be a leader in the youth group. His spiritual life seems to be in a bit of a slump. His appetites for the things of the world seem to be on the increase. He loves the Lord, and every single time I see him, even though he pulls up playing music that I don’t want my 9 year old to hear, he is wearing a “Christian t-shirt”. The last time he was here, I was asking him why I don’t see him in church. He comes to Sunday school, but he goes directly to work at one of the only local restaurants after that. I told him that stunk – to which he replied, “Yeah. The people who come in after church are our WORST customers.” While the enemy and the world are enticing his heart towards its values, those who profess the name of Christ are pushing him away. Evidently these “Christians” are demanding, rude, picky, and leave poor tips. Yes, we are only human, and everybody has a bad day, but if we are being constantly transformed into His image – these instances should be very few and far between. And what about going back to apologize when you have that occasional "bad day"?
I have been in gatherings where others have acted hateful to our wait-staff, only to turn around and bow their heads over their meal. It smacks of hypocrisy. If you are going to behave badly, don’t wear your “Christian” jewelry, t-shirts or bumper stickers. Just blend in with the homogenous crowd – which is all you are doing anyway – but don’t defame the Name of MY Jesus. Or, decide right now to be different – swim upstream against the flow of the crowd, and you’ll never know what an impact your words and actions may make to a watching world.