Steve, a young philosophy student, had the assignment to investigate various religions and then write his conclusions about them. On a brisk Sunday morning in December, Steve visited a Baptist church for the first time. After the service ended, he talked to the pastor. "You spoke passionately from the Bible. Now I see people from the congregation visiting with one another and I have heard some talking about what God is doing in their lives. This is incredible. I have never seen this before!"
Steve was impressed by people who believed in God’s Word and experienced Him in their daily lives. How we live and interact with other people can be a strong testimony to Christ. One impactful way is to demonstrate genuine love. This, however, is not easy.
We are quick to not only complain about the immorality, violence, corruption, and injustice of society but to condemn those involved. Bible verses against sexual sins, abortion, and addictions flash into our minds and we pass judgment on the guilty. We shy away from those who have crazy bright-colored hair, and bodies covered with tattoos and piercings. Do these reactions show God’s unconditional love? Does such behavior cause people to react as Steve did on that Sunday morning? Will we draw people to Christ this way?
When Jesus walked on this earth, He took time to minister to lepers, demon-possessed, blind, and chronically ill people. He showed love and compassion to those society considered unacceptable, outcasts, hopeless, and unworthy of time and effort. He was passionate and genuine when it came to the needs of those around him. Jesus did not compromise or condone sin, but He loved the sinner and was actively engaged in reaching them. Jesus is our example; we are to live and respond as He did. "But when he saw the multitudes, he was moved with compassion on them,” (Matthew 9:36 KJV).
We are surrounded by hurting, distraught, confused, unbelieving people. Are we willing to take time and show love in an authentic Christ-like manner? This may mean investing time and listening to someone needing a friend or inviting an undesirable home for a meal. It might mean doing without some wish and giving the money to a needy family or sending it to a missionary. Be willing and let the Holy Spirit guide you. Time is growing short. Let's not waste it! Allow the Lord to use you to impact others for Him.
“And of some have compassion, making a difference” (Jude1:23 KJV).