Walk it How You Talk it
I remember in undergrad, I believe it was my sophomore year, someone said to me,
“Oh. I didn’t know you were a Christian.”
My first response was one of offense. “How dare they say that? Do they not see my Jesus Calling posts on IG every week?” Then after my flesh got over it, I could hear God’s Spirit speaking to me. I was instantly reminded of freshman year when I was at the club and saw one of the student leaders of a campus ministry having a great time with friends by the bar. When I saw her, I thought to myself, “what is she doing here? She shouldn’t be here. She’s a leader at church.” Holy Spirit instantly arrested me and responded, “you shouldn’t be here either.” She and I were in the same place. Yeah, she was out of place BUT SO WAS I. I had no room to cast judgement. I needed to look in the mirror.
I share all of this to say, at some point we have to stop just talking that talk and actually start walking that walk. The statement made to me was very sobering. It reminded me that people listen more to how we live than what we say. Anyone can quote Scripture but not everyone lives it. Our lives are the only sermon many will hear. What is your life preaching?
PS. We are also quick to set expectations and standards for leaders in church when really we are all held to the SAME STANDARD - JESUS CHRIST. If we aren’t living like Him, we are living wrong. If our lifestyle doesn’t align with His Word, we are in the wrong.
There are different levels of responsibility and accountability but there is only one standard. It doesn’t matter if you hold a position at church or just occupy the pew.
The experience I shared above about the club reminds me of this song lyric from Co-sign, Pt. 2 by Lecrae. My immediate reaction was one of judgment but God quickly checked me. How can I judge her for being where I am and doing what I’m doing? YES, she was a leader and had a “greater role” or “greater responsibility” at church because of it BUT at the end of the day, we are BOTH BELIEVERS. We are both held to the same standard of Jesus Christ.
God doesn’t make a list of sins that apply solely to leaders and then let those who don’t hold a leadership position slide on it.
**The absence of a title isn’t a green light to live how we want in private.**
Jesus didn’t set an example of how to live just for leaders at church. He set the example for ALL BELIEVERS.
Let’s be just as quick, if not quicker, to check ourselves and hold ourselves accountable as we are to check, call out and correct others. Some of us find too much pleasure in approaching people about their sins (or whispering and gossiping about them) when we ourselves haven’t even been working out our own salvation. (Phil. 2:12-13)
Whew. The nerve of me condemning her for being in the club when I was there myself.
Whew. The nerve of us condemning people for struggling with the same sins we do.
Whew. The nerve of us condemning people for being where we once were.
Mankind has a tendency to do this. This is why Jesus calls on everyone in John 8 to reflect on their own shortcomings before throwing stones at the woman caught in the act of adultery. How did those men even know where to find her having sex with a man she wasn’t married to anyway???
Anywho...this post isn’t to say we shouldn’t correct sin and/or admonish our brothers and sisters in the Faith. It’s to remind us to be slow to condemn others (in fact, let’s not condemn at all) and be quick to check our walk to make sure that it aligns with Christ.
Be blessed, Sowfull Crew!