How do other people know that you are a follower of Christ? What reason do people have to think “There is something different about this person?”
There’s this section of highway that I have to take on the way to work every morning that backs up pretty badly. When I’m headed down the entrance ramp, the people trying to get off on the next exit (almost a mile away) are already blocking our ability to enter the road, and it can get pretty hairy. Getting into the flow of traffic isn’t so difficult of course, a merge is a merge, and no one can really get too angry at you for entering the roadway. I’ll make my way into the lane to the left of the exit lane pretty quickly, where traffic moves at a decent clip.
Unfortunately, I like to stay there, and not for any good reason. See, a lot of people will use that lane as an opportunity to fly up and cut over at the last minute, essentially cutting off a mile’s worth of traffic, and in my mind, that wrong (it is illegal, actually, I’m not trying to say it’s not). The problem is, though, that I like to make it really clear that the people doing this are wrong!
When they slow down (in traffic moving at 60+ miles per hour) to cut over at the last minute, instead of getting over to the next left lane (which is always empty) I almost make it my mission to stay there, honking my horn, making it clear that what they are doing is wrong. “They are holding me up! They are being rude to others!” is my justification to myself for my behavior. “I’m doing everyone a favor, I’m showing them how bad they are.”
But is it really helping anything? No. When I’m not behind the wheel, and I look back at the times where I’ve done this, I think to myself “Why do I do that?! What possible reason justifies this?” The truth is, as Christians, we aren’t supposed to behave like this. Am I really showing people who Christ is by making a lot of noise, and pointing out the flaws of others? Or am i saying “Look at me. NO! Look at ME! I’m righteous! I do the right thing! You are wrong in your behavior!”
In what ways do you show the righteousness of Christ, and where can you pray for God to do a little work in an area of your life where you refuse to let go?
16 In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven. (ESV)