First United Methodist Church, Lewistown, PA 17044  ~  717-248-4618   ~  fumc200@outlook.com

Lost in the background.

January 4, 2017

    There's a reason tools are usually shiny chrome. It's bad enough when I'm wrenching on a vehicle, lay tools down within reach and five minutes later can't find those blasted things. The other day, I ran across these beauties. Camouflaged deepwell sockets. Wow!! I quickly laid them back in the bin....

     While they sure are pretty, I can't help but think how easily they would get lost. I mean you are listening to a man who suffers from hyperopia (far-sightedness) and needs reading glasses to read fine print. Now, companies want me to buy their tools that ultimately will blend into the floor, the vehicle, or other nebulous backgrounds. It would be fun to watch me grope around underneath the vehicle looking for camouflaged tools....actually, no it wouldn't. You might get to see how impatient I really am.

    But this blog isn't about pretty tools or my impatience though. It is about Christians that blend in with their culture. It is about camouflaged Christianity that blends in and never impacts the culture. This blog is also about faith boldly lived in such a way that the Gospel of Jesus is preached, lived, and offered to a world lost in the confusion of spiritual dissonance.

    With these camo sockets, I could see little work getting done. I would either be suffering eye strain trying to read the size of the socket or look like a squirrel hunting for buried walnuts (as the socket lays in plain sight).  Followers of Jesus who tend to blend into the background and remain silent miss a few key traits of a disciple. Jesus took all authority in heaven and earth and commanded his disciples to live boldly. 

    "Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 

Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” (Matthew 28:18-20, NIV)

    Our Christian faith cannot be lived in a bubble nor can it be lived invisibly.  Shining the light of God, the love of Jesus and the power of the Holy Spirit into our dark world will always bring healing.  God did not seem to offer alternative ways to live out our faith. Note the Matthew 28 text does not say, "Therefore (if you feel like it)  go and make....."

    Today offers another chance for us to live, love, and offer grace and forgiveness with vivid detail. Today is another opportunity to live in the world but not live like the world. Disciples (followers) of Jesus should stand out in a sea of faces and there should be a compelling image of Jesus radiating from our faces. Anyone looking for hope in this dark world should be drawn right to us. Is that happening for you? If not, it's time to shake off the camo and shine!

 

 

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