Serving and helping others “lets people be around Christians at their best,” the pastor said as he described the difference of how believers look and act when they are concerned about a situation and heading out into the community to offer assistance.
But those same believers sometimes can reflect a different image — a not so pretty picture — when back home tucked safely inside the church building or maneuvering through their everyday lives.
As he talked, my mind wandered a bit — why would that be true of Christians?
Why would those of us who know Christ ever be OK allowing the ugly side of our natural selves to overshadow the glory of the Lord inside us?
I’m guessing we really aren’t OK with it; we just don’t always allow Him full reign over our lives, which would in turn solve the problem.
We allow the stresses of life to eat at us while also attempting to shoulder the various pressures suffocating us.
We spend less and less time seeking to be like Him. And our time reading, praying, listening, learning and serving is riddled with noise, clutter and countless distractions.
Or maybe we throw ourselves into the service role, go to every Bible study offered within driving distance and work hard to be at church each time the doors are open, but we aren’t listening and absorbing. We are merely actively doing God stuff.
Well, anyway, as I continued to think on the idea of “being around Christians at their best,” I decided we could all do some self-evaluating.
What do I look like at my best? What do you look like at your best? What does this actually mean in the context of being a Christian?
Could we make simple tweaks here and there to allow the “best” moments to show up more frequently and be more common than the less-than-our-best moments?
I don’t know about you but my list got really long really fast, so I decided there’s no real need to share those with each other.
I mean, you trust me and I trust you, right? So we can move right along to the next step — working on one or two of the items on the list that keep us from being our best.
And crazy enough we are right in the middle of the Lenten season, so we’ve got the perfect excuse to fast from one of the actions or inactions causing our Jesus shine to be a bit dull.
Yes, yes, sharing this idea prior to Ash Wednesday would have been more powerful, but here we are jumping in midstream and making it count.
So, what comes to mind? What’s something in your routine or your life in general that if it weren’t there, Jesus would shine through more?
It’s OK if the list is long — you’ll be in good company, I assure you — and it’s OK to pick only one thing at a time.
We’ve got to start somewhere, and once we tame the first item maybe we can officially let it go and move on to a second item that needs some attention.