Be a Witness

  • July 20, 2016
  • #8928

Witnessing for Jesus requires self-control because others are watching us, and they expect us to act like Him.

Be a Witness

Hi, I’m Joni Eareckson Tada reading from Acts chapter 1, verse 8.

You know this Bible verse well. It’s Jesus’ parting words to his disciples, his charge to them – to us – right before he ascends to heaven. He tells us, "But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth."

Oh, to be a witness for Christ; to point people to him, to make him famous, to tell others how good and gracious he is, to make Christ look good in the eyes of others. To do those things that honor his reputation, and so much more. From the moment you and I became Christians, God charged us to be witnesses for his Son. So we brag on, we boast on Jesus; and we better. People are constantly watching us. And if they know you're a Christian, they are really watching. And sometimes they're watching when you least expect it.

The other day I purchased a new computer (my old one had crashed).  Instead of making life simpler, the new computer had me lost in a sea of special commands and option keys. I flipped open my owner's manual and rang up the 800-number. A machine answered and presented me with layers of messages to work my way through, which only added to my frustration. Finally, I spoke to a real person: She said, "Hi, I'm Michelle, and I'm here to help you. First, what's your name?"

I growled back, "Joni Eareckson Tada.  And boy, Michelle, I hope you can help me. I am not a happy camper." There was a brief silence on the other end, after which Michelle said, "Are you the Joni Eareckson Tada?"

Oh my goodness, I'd been caught. Here I was about to chew out this lady and her computer company, but she knew I was a follower of Jesus; probably she was, too. So Michelle said with a laugh, "Oh, Mrs. Tada, I know who you are so you can't get too frustrated with me!" At that point, we both laughed; because she was right. The reputation of Jesus was at stake, and I dare not let loose careless words that could wound or hurt, especially a sister in Christ like Michelle.

And I guess it begs the question. Should you, or should we as Christians always weigh every word? Never tell a lie? Always keep your temper under control? Say only what you mean and mean what you say? Of course we should. We have no excuse doing otherwise, for when you name the name of Christ, people expect you to act like Him. Talk like him. In short, be a witness for him.  Is that a bad thing? No, not at all; for the Christian, it's reasonable. Is it easy? No, weighing your words before you speak is always hard. But it’s doing the hard and good things that ultimately make for a good witness for Jesus.

Friend, you can do your part well and build up Christ-followers as well as make unbelievers thirsty for God, or you can act out your frustrations and defame Christ's good name. Which will it be today? Remember, you have received a high calling. I have received a high calling, even when my computer isn't working. You know, I would love to hear from you on this topic. Have you ever been caught like Michelle caught me, ready to let loose a long string of complaints? Well, I invite your comments on my radio page today at joniandfriends.org. Finally, pray with me: ‘Lord Jesus, enable me to live in a way that honors You today. When others aren't looking or when I’m thinking I'm anonymous, remind me that You see me. Help me to be a good witness. In your Name, Amen.’

Photo: Bettercities.net

© Joni and Friends

 

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