“Then He said to them, “Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.”” – Matthew 4:19
What is our impact as Christians? The word Christians literally means follower of Christ, but what does that mean? Believing Jesus died, resurrected, is God are all fundamental yes, but if we believe it… how then does it change us? How does it cause a great shift in us? How do we then lead our life? How do we treat others? For us men, how do we respect our wives and children? How do we praise Him, and how does that show others? What fruit will our tree grow, and what fruit will others see?
I’m convinced that God designed each and every one of us for purpose, and to be displays of His redemption and glory! Each of us could fill lengthy tables with our sins. Christ went to the cross for each and every one of those… for ALL of us. Beyond that though, he transforms us. Our forgiveness and redemption has such great value that it causes us to CHANGE. I had a conversation with my wife last night about change, and how it feels to me. I’m very intentional now about what is on my mind daily. I’m intentional about how I talk, and especially about how I do not talk. In Matthew 12, Jesus speaks about know a tree by its fruit. I want to bear good fruit to all witnesses. I want my work friends to know and see the same fruit my church friends see. I want to live a life in which there is no separation. Our tree should not bear different fruit dependent on who is seeing it.
In the same, it is not possible to bear witness of Christ, if the fruit is not the same. I think back to why it was always so difficult for me to share a belief in Christ with anyone, and the majority of times it was out of fear they knew the fruit that I bore. I want my impact on this earth to mean something to God. I want my wife to feel loved and secure that I love her as a Christian husband should. In his devotional book “Husband After God”, Aaron Smith put it this way, “God gave us the covenant of marriage as an awesome symbol of the relationship He desires to have with mankind. He has given you an opportunity, unlike any other, to experience deep love, the kind of love that Jesus has for the church. The Union between you and your wife is purposed to reflect the Gospel so that the world may come to know Jesus.” I think that’s an outstanding way to describe it. After all, even the miracles Jesus performed were not for His benefit. He’s already and always God. Every miracle he performed was for a purpose so that others would see and believe. Why shouldn’t it be the same with our marriages. Jesus said, “By this all will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another. (John 13:35)” Christ never intended for division in His church, among His people, nor in the covenant of marriage. However, we as humans often make a large amount of mistakes and mess things up.
A huge change in me, personally, is how much my heart breaks thinking about divorce and the division of families. It used to be something I never thought or cared about. I would hear of it happening at work, or friends in the church and just think, “Oh, that sucks.” Since giving my heart to Christ though, and receiving a transformed mind, I can honestly say it hurts to hear of and I want to do as much as possible to see less and less of it. I want to see marriages restored, hearts passionately devoted to God, and families thriving in the same way the church thrives in relationship to God.
I hope all of you had a fantastic Easter weekend, and a great start to your week!