Saturday, January 26, 2019

Faithful Presence

Continue steadfastly in prayer, being watchful in it with thanksgiving. At the same time, pray also for us, that God may open to us a door for the word, to declare the mystery of Christ, on account of which I am in prison— that I may make it clear, which is how I ought to speak.
Walk in wisdom toward outsiders, making the best use of the time. Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer each person (Colossians 4:1-6, ESV).

How are we to be present in the world? What does faithful presence look like? How are we to think, speak and act as Christians during our limited time here? These are questions I’m pondering more lately having just read The Year of Our Lord 1943: Christian Humanism in an Age of Crisis by Alan Jacobs.

Whatever your vocation, “it has no meaning,” wrote Jacques Ellul in 1946, ‘if it is not guided, accompanied, and sustained by another work, one that Christians alone can do and yet often do not” (in Jacobs, p. 200). What is that work? Steadfast, expectant prayer guided with Biblical wisdom as we relate with those around us who are outside the kingdom of God.

Do you believe that by God’s grace, followers of Jesus are participants in a work of preservation of what is good, salvation of the lost and transformation of the saved? If so, understand that our “making the best use of the time” requires Spirit-renewed hearts that demonstrate right behavior and Gospel witness in the world.  

This year, as your relationship with Jesus deepens through practicing various spiritual disciplines (Scripture reading, mediation, prayer, fasting, worship, gratitude, generosity, etc.) and is aided by the Spirit of grace, take every opportunity to tell the Good News of Jesus. An authentic Christian witness in lifestyle accompanied with a clear telling of the Good News will surely bear eternal fruit that benefits the world today.

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