I was – I am – I always will be God! You can’t change me to be what you want, but I will gladly change you to be what I want, if you will let me!
Twenty-some-odd years ago, I was a sinner! As is true with every single person, I did things that God said I should not do. Then I was saved. Now, I am still a sinner. The difference is, now I know it and I know I am forgiven.
As Christians, we often put on masks in an effort to not be known as falling short of what God calls us to be and do. In some circles, this is called, “Legalism.” It doesn’t do anyone any good. In fact, it does more harm than good to hide the fact that we are not perfect.
First, other believers know there is no such thing as a perfect person. Therefore, they look at you and your mask and note that you are self-righteous and a hypocrite. They talk about you behind your back… oh wait, that makes them gossips and judgmental… I guess they are not perfect either.
Next, non-believers know you are not perfect and therefore don’t trust you to tell them the truth about Jesus. They are looking for two main things: first, that you don’t “shove God down their throats.” Next is that you do what you preach. They’re not looking for the things you do wrong as much as if you do what you tell them not to do.
Here’s my simple suggestions…
- Encourage each other not to hide your faults… and don’t you judge them for being open about them. By allowing them their faults, you are allowing God room to work in their lives. They don’t have to pretend and therefore are more open to His leading.
- A non-believer will rarely walk away just because you used the name of Jesus in conversation. If they know you are a Christian, they would expect to hear you mention Him. However, If you throw His name at them like a large stone and make darn sure they know they are horrible people on their way to hell… they will agree with you and leave… not listening to a thing you say. You may be the one to seal their eternal fate.
- As you talk to a non-believer, remember, it is not you who saves. You can explain what sin is and how Jesus saves us for eternity. However, it is the spirit of God who empowers you to speak and Jesus himself overcomes the hardened heart to bring this person to Himself.
Now, more than ever before people need to hear about Jesus of the Bible. Not the Jesus we make up and mold into our likeness, rather He who walked the Earth as a man and invites us to call on Him in every situation.
We are quick to point fingers at Believers who don’t think like us, Pastors who have to big of a church or make too much money, or even people who read the wrong Bible version! We try to define what others should believe, say, and do to be just like us… the perfect followers of Christ.
Wouldn’t it be nice if we practiced love (God’s version of love), grace, and forgiveness. When a believer falls, we lift them up instead of saying, “see, I told you they were…”
We all know the Great Commission. Go out and share who Christ is and what He wants for us… don’t become keyboard-warriors spending your time on YouTube explaining why everyone else is wrong. Again, all you are doing is driving away the people who need to know about Jesus and His saving GRACE.
Just a reminder: King David was an adulteress and a murderer. However, because of His longing for God and desire to do God’s will, God saw his heart and forgave his sins and called him a man after God’s own heart.
We can look at all of the events taking place in the world today and see how things are happening faster and faster. We can see how these events correlate with what the Bible describes as end times events. Now, more than ever, we need to be sharing the love of Christ with each other as well as those who do not yet believe. We share – God saves – Holy Spirit teaches.
God doesn’t change. He was… He is… He always will be the God of the Bible. We often try to manipulate the Bible and therefore, God to be who we think He should be rather than who He really is: the creator and sustainer of everything and everyone. We are His family – His children. We are called to be a family with God being our Father.
With that in mind, perhaps we can focus on His desires and plan and less on our own egos. Maybe we can go back to Jesus’ disciples who boldly spoke out for Christ. We can share with those who will listen and not alienate those who won’t. Maybe the next person will be the one to get through to them.
In the end, we are judged for our own actions – not those of others. We are forgiven for our sins – not others. We are loved by God for who He made us to be – not for who we made ourselves out to be. Let’s focus on His plans and not on getting everyone to be like us. After all, for those of us who have called on Jesus to save us, are saved for eternity. He loves each of us as if we were the only one on Earth. Lets love Him back with as much intensity as we can.