When I read the news or watch an update on TV and hear the stories of murder, terror, or civil unrest, I can find myself vacillating between fear, anger, or despair. Do you ever feel powerless or that nothing you do will matter?
Some seem to think that “screaming” or “yelling” at people on Facebook or posting nasty comments on blogs or websites with views that differ from our opinions is the answer.
While there may be a few God ordained prophets or apologists among us, most of us are called to a different kind of involvement – one that wins people through the fresh and sweet aroma of Jesus. For most of us, it will be Jesus in us, embedded amidst a lost world, that will get people’s attention.
During a time of severe persecution and danger for Christians in the first century, Paul’s words of exhortation are intriguing:
I urge, then, first of all, that requests, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for everyone—for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all men to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. For there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself as a ransom for all men—the testimony given in its proper time (1 Timothy 2:1-6 NIV)
This is quite a different response than you might expect! No call to arms or encouragement to protest and shout at politicians that disagree with us. No despair or retreat either! Instead:
1. Pray for those in authority
2. Endeavoring to live peaceful and quiet lives – in godliness and holiness
3. Setting us up for a timely testimony to given when the time is right.
For most believers, our contribution to cultural transformation in the name of Jesus is peaceful, persistent, daily living that honors Jesus through our godly service among people without hope.