For a while now, there has been an effort, perhaps in a simple act of making everyone feel valued, the concept that everyone has a story to tell.
Each of us has a life; of experiences and events, of trials and tragedy, joy and suffering and the opportunity for us to learn and share together is great. Yet in increasingly difficult times, of political correctness gone severely wrong, of commentary and mixed emotions as conversations mixed opinion and fact and neither side being able to accurately discern which is what... the sharing of one's faith and the truth of Christ can feel at times like the last thing one wants engage themselves.
We all look at each other as though the one in front of us has blinders on; deceived by their experience and faith or lack of either (perhaps even both!)
Yet, on this #communitySaturday, consider the words of Titus. who offers the history of Christianity in it's previous life...
From chapter 3, verse 7:
"For we ourselves also were sometimes foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving divers lusts and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful and hating one another." He goes on to talk how we were changed, after the "kindness and love of God our Savior toward man appeared... according to His mercy He saved us".
This alone also describes just how much work the Holy Spirit has to work in our own lives as we work our faith, "in a 21st context" as the phrase is often heard around my church. However, it also describes the perspective we as Christians should keep in the forefront of our mind, as we converse with those around us who have yet come to faith in God through Jesus Christ.
It's so easy to get caught up in our live and "our story" that we forget, that once we have accepted Christ, the narrative changes to His story... what He has accomplished in our lives and how He has and will use what we were before Christ to bring glory to God and use it for to further His eternal and perfect plans and purposes. How amazing is His grace, indeed.
Pray, this #communitySaturday, that those who believe in God "might be careful to maintain good works" (Titus 3:8). May we remember the work Christ has done in our lives and recognize as we engage, the love God has for those around us. God grant us wisdom, that we would not live as we once did, nor would we be remembered for how we once lived. May the story we share with a world who desperately needs Christ, be His story of the change He has made in our hearts and minds. Pray discernment in navigating difficult conversations; that we would engage in ways that are good and profitable for the kingdom, rather than unprofitable and vain, as Titus describes. May the plans of the Deceiver be foiled; that eyes and minds would be opened to hear and hearts prepared to receive the Word, as we speak Truth and reflect Christ, rather than project self.
His Story made alive,
Because we placed our story second.
That Christ would be lifted up
As we submit ourselves to Him
Anew and afresh,
For the glory of God
And the cause of Jesus Christ.
Just a man, attempting to fulfill God's plan. Husband, Dad, Dreamer. Blogger.