As Christian, our lives should stand out, so now ask yourself this. Is what I do daily make me stand out as a Christian?
We should stand out! In fact, one of the Bible’s clearest teachings is that if we serve Christ then our faith will show. If we believe that what we find in Jesus is better than any philosophy, philosopher, prophet, priest, person, program or practice then our lives should visibly reflect the difference Jesus makes in us.
Hebrews 13:1-6 give us 5 areas that will be outstanding in our lives as we follow Jesus.
First, Our Love Will Stand Out. “Let brotherly love continue.” Verse 1
We are to live as if our fellow believers are family and we are to love them like they are family because they are.
Remember—the norm in our world is not love—the norm is to focus on self rather than others—so when we love the way Jesus loves we do stand out. The Bible commands us to do this—to keep on doing it—to let Christ-like love remain!
Second, Our Hospitality Will Stand Out. “Don’t neglect to show hospitality, for by doing this some have welcomed angels as guests without knowing it.” Verse 2
Hospitality is “the friendly and generous reception and entertainment of guests, visitors, or strangers.”
We might show hospitality to someone by showing them compassion, praying for them, assisting them in some way, or visiting someone who is unable to come out from where they are.
Showing hospitality to a stranger may also open the door for us to share the Gospel. If someone in need comes to us for help and all we do is turn him away, what chance have we of telling that person that God came to earth to save those who will believe?
Third, Our Compassion Will Stand Out “Remember the prisoners, as though you were in prison with them, and the mistreated, as though you yourselves were suffering bodily.” Verse 3
John Wesley put it this way, “Put yourself in the place of every poor man and deal with him as you would want God to deal with you.”
We do this as people who have put their faith in Jesus because let’s face it, the world doesn’t usually see Christians as empathetic or compassionate. No—they tend to see us as legalistic and judgmental—Uncaring.
Jesus explained that when we show love to others – to those in need, strangers, those in prison, and so forth, we are showing love to Him. Matthew 25:35-36,
Fourth, Our Relationships Will Stand Out. “Marriage must be respected by all, and the marriage bed kept undefiled, because God will judge immoral people and adulterers.” Verse 4
Our world’s view of marriage is far from God’s original intent.
Biblical marriage is the gold standard of Gods desire for mankind. God designed marriage so that a man and a woman could experience a depth of love that is possible only by commitment. Marriage was meant to be a relationship of love to help us understand the depth of love that God has for us. We can’t do this apart from the committed relationship that we call “marriage”.
The Bible teaches us that our faith must show in our marriage. And for you singles out there—does your faith show in your dating?
Fifth, Our Contentment Will Stand Out. “Your life should be free from the love of money. Be satisfied with what you have, for He Himself has said, I will never leave you or forsake you.” Verse 5
The sad fact is too many people don’t keep their lives free from the love of money. They love it—and the things it buys—too much.
The point is that many people—young and old—base their security on money and the things it buys. They look to their finances for security. So the Bible says, “Keep your lives free from the love (or slave) of money—be content.” This is possible because God says here that He will never leave or forsake us. He will take care of us. He will provide for our needs.
Living like a Christian affects all of life: The way we love, our practice of hospitality, our compassion, our relationships, and our finances. What is the Lord doing in these areas of your life? Are there changes by God's grace that need to take place? It is time to demonstrate in reality what Christ has done inwardly in your life. Let our prayer be, “God help us live like Christians, publicly and privately.”
(Lloyd Blanton is CEO and Director of FreedomWay Ministries, a faith-based service, in Cleburne County.)