Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Bad example

Last week I was caught in a massive traffic jam on the beltway. My lane was disappearing and all the cars in front of me were, one by one, slowly merging into the adjoining lane. There was a big juiced-up pick-up truck beside me. He hugged the bumper of the car in front of him and refused to let anyone merge in front of him. A sign on the rear of his truck, in huge iridescent letters, boldly proclaimed “JESUS SAVES.” I wanted to get out of my car, pound on his window, and tell him he’s a rude blankety-blank who gives Christians a bad name. I didn’t. He might have shot me.

It seems right to me that the life of a Christian should be marked, set apart by faith. The rude man in the pick-up truck wasn’t persuading other beltway drivers that day to say, “Wow—he’s a Christian. I can see how his faith affects his life. I want what he has.” No, they were probably thinking his faith didn’t make him a better person.

And what about me? Am I a good example? Does my faith make me a better person? Everyone knows I’m a Christian. Yet often I don’t create a good example of a person with a joyful Christian heart, fearless, rooted in the Lord. I’ve been entangled in grief and sadness. If people look to me for an example of a Christian woman who rises above the muck of human existence, they are not going to see it. My prayer is that the Lord lifts from me the grief and sadness. Lift it so that I can be an example of faith in action, joy rooted in an unshakeable trust in God. I just want to hand over the troubles to God—He can handle them. And let my faith rise above it, let me understand how this works for His good. In all things, according to His purpose.

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