Sometimes I don’t think we fully understand the meaning of some confessions we make as Christians, we probably mean it with everything in us, but have we really sat to understand the gravity conveyed in the message?
As much as we’ll like to answer a loud yes, I beg to differ and say no.
Psalm 23 verse 3 says ‘He leads me in the path of righteousness for His names sake‘. So beyond ourselves, is Gods name that we bear as Christians.
I sat with a younger friend recently and as I always do periodically, I asked her for a ‘life update’, she knows what I mean so she went right into it. She got into her relationship life and she scoffed. As expected, I asked her what that meant and she divulged a ‘situationship’ that happened between her and a minister in church. I’ve named him ‘minister in church’ because this was how she said it to me and being a little sensitive, I could tell she was being sarcastic and said it more out of mockery than genuinely, so I probed further and some of the discoveries made, left me hurt and really speechless.
Not to pass any blame games, but at least for her, I know she is pretty much new to the faith and gaining her footing, but for the actions of the other person who I know quite well as a respected member of a church community, I was genuinely hurt.
She scoffed about his ministrations and spiritual actions and peoples response to it and she said to me “how come people cant sense, see or feel the facade?” and asked me how she can be sure that more people don’t do what he does, and honestly, I was left speechless, only able to say “it is well”, only because I knew I was hurt in that moment and anything I said would have been more emotional than as the Spirit would lead me.
I don’t subscribe to pointing fingers or empowering one in a community as ‘holiest’ or ‘above sin’, but I do say to people as seen in my bible that to whom much is given, much is expected, and so for certain levels God will bring us to occupy, we must know that He expects the best representation at that place.
The representation is not just for us and our reputations, it is more for Gods name that we bear. It is true that God can defend His name by Himself, but we as representatives are able to make the work even somewhat harder or easier by the way we live and portray our God to be.
From the entire ordeal, my take away and huge lesson was a reminder of the name I bear and who I carry behind me, a reminder that the world could judge my God based on the way I present Him, a reminder that I have a responsibility to the rest of my body (Body of Christ), to carry myself knowing I’m carrying a name that affects us all.
If we’re the only bible some people will ever read, I think we owe it to ourselves, to or co-labourers and also to the person, who’s name we bear, to actually live right and showcase the true nature of the identity we carry. It is true, we would never be able to do this by our strength, so I pray for grace for us, to live above self and live in accordance to God’s Spirit.