Sunday, February 25, 2007

On Location

Andy finished a great series today at church called “On Location.” It was an amazing message about being a light for Christ wherever you are, wherever God has placed you on location.

It’s not about standing on a corner with a sign yelling at people at a Braves game, that’s just obnoxious. It’s about allowing God to live the Christian life through you in those places where He has placed you.

It’s about conversation, not confrontation.
And it’s about everyday, not just Sunday.

It’s about being the only light for Christ in your family, or being one of a few Christians in your workplace. It’s about realizing that we have been strategically placed by God in our various environments for a reason.

But I think sometimes the danger is results. We are such a results driven society that even Christians have a tendency to always want to measure effectiveness. Are we impacting people? How many lives have been saved or changed? Is church attendance up or down? You know…all the “what are the results” questions.

And to a certain degree these are important things to consider but I think it is easy to get too caught up in results. One of the things that Andy shared that really hit me was his reference to one sermon that Jesus gave when He told his followers “You are the salt of the earth.” To be honest, I had never really understood what that meant until this series. Salt is a preserver and what Jesus was saying to his followers was “You are the preservers of this earth.”

In His eyes, they represented hope.

And our mere presence in certain situations and locations today also represents hope to God. This has really helped me better understand my placement at my job right now and it has really helped me better understand my placement as a small group leader for second graders.

Trying to control ten second graders is a crazy thing (especially when eight are boys). I go through the planned activities with them and try to share insight with them so they are reminded each week that God loves them. But sometimes it just gets chaotic, like glorified babysitting. I wish I could do better at telling them when they do a good job instead of just calling them out when they misbehave.

But this series has taught me that my mere presence of sitting Indian-style (I mean criss-cross apple sauce) in the circle with them on a weekly basis represents hope in the eyes of God. And even though on some Sundays I don’t feel like I am able to get them to understand everything we talk about, I still show up.

I’m there. I’m on the scene. And God tells me that I represent hope.

I have a strong feeling that this principle will come into play in South America. Especially, once I have been there awhile and my tendency to measure results kicks in.

I will need to remember that my mere presence in South America = hope to God.

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