Post details: Show Off or Witness?

07/17/15

Permalink 07:58:54 am, Step(s): 12 Ministry and Practice, 420 words   English (US)

Show Off or Witness?

"Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works..." (Matthew 5:16 ).

Now, I don't know about you, but that text scares me. It sounds like Jesus is saying that I should show off to people because my works are really great. But, all my righteousness is as "filthy rags" (Isaiah 64:6 ). And even if God has blessed me enough to have a light worth shining, I still have a problem with showing off. You see, in my lifetime, I've been exposed to a lot of people who seldom talk about anything other than their "great" accomplishments. And, in my carnal nature, I've done some of that too. Maybe that's why it makes me sick when I hear it now. I guess that's why I consciously resist any urge to talk about any "good" thing I might have done, or said.

But hold on... Is that really what Jesus meant? What about the rest of that text -- "...and glorify your Father which is in heaven." (Matthew 5:16 ). Wow, that changes things... That takes the focus off me and gives glory to God. I'm more comfortable with that. But still, it makes me nervous, because my works really aren't that great. So let's look at another saying of Jesus to see if it helps.

In Mark, chapter 5, the story is told of how Jesus cast a bunch of demons out of this wretched man and into a nearby heard of pigs. Love for Jesus immediately sprung up in this man's heart. He pleaded with Jesus to become one of his disciples. But Jesus said, "No, go home to your family, and tell them everything the Lord has done for you and how merciful he has been.” 20 So the man started off to visit the Ten Towns[a] of that region and began to proclaim the great things Jesus had done for him; and everyone was amazed at what he told them." (Mark 5:18-20 ).

That really makes me re-think my position on this. When I consider all that God has done for me during my years of following Him, I have to admit that I really do have some experiences that are worth sharing. My love for Jesus is great, because I have been forgiven much (Luke 7:47 ). The truth is that I am driven to share with others the great things that God has done (and is doing) for me. What about you? Do you also have stories of God's grace and mercy in your life that may inspire others?

"Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to others, and to practice these principles in all our affairs." (Step 12)

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