moving from anti- to for
Meet Sarah Williams a member of the Storied Church covenant team. I am so excited that Sarah is apart of the covenant team especially because of her passion for how the church betters the community that it exists.
“If you were arrested for being a Christian, would there be enough evidence to convict you?”
I heard that question years ago and it has stuck with me because of how well it prompts us to reflect on if our actions actually point to the fact that we are followers of Christ. And what should those actions be? I’ve been reminded of this with the recent hype about celebrities and politicians and if their faith is truly sincere or merely for celebrity/political fame and gain. While we can’t know their motives, the conversation around how they are or are not different now that they profess Christianity has had me reflecting on what my own story says about Jesus. How am I different and how is society at large perceiving what it means to be a Christian? Would there be enough evidence in my life to convict me?
A lot of times in our current popular culture, I think the evidence of being a Christian is, unfortunately, seen as more of what some Christians are against.
It seems what is often lifted up in the media and society is a story of Christianity as anti-LGBTQ, anti-abortion, anti-immigrant, anti-women in leadership, anti-drinking, etc.
I am drawn to follow the ways of Jesus because of what he calls us to be for, evidence that would look like this:
caring for orphans and widows in their distress and refusing to let the world corrupt you (James 1:27)
feeding the hungry, giving the thirsty something to drink, welcoming the stranger, caring for the sick and those in prison, caring for the least of these (Matthew 25)
loving our neighbors (Mark 12:31)
doing what is right, loving mercy, and walking humbly (Micah 6:8)
being people of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control (Gal 5:22-23)
I could keep going, but I hope you get the point. What if we as Christians put more energy into being what Jesus was for and living in such a way that our life was evidence of that.
For example, what if we fostered and adopted kids who need a home and cared for widows who don’t have kids nearby? What if we were known as people who met basic needs, welcomed the stranger, neighbored well with radical hospitality? What if we sought justice and practiced mercy, humility, and the fruits of the spirit?
I know I certainly don’t live up to all of that but what if the story of being a Christian was someone seeking to live that out? What if we were known for more than people who come together in a building on Sunday mornings?
What if, instead, daily, we were people who sought to love God, love others, better our community, and better our world. That’s the vision of Storied Church and it excites me because that’s the kind of evidence I’d like society to associate with being a Christian.
What is the evidence of Christ in your life? Would it be enough to convict you?