In Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount, He tells us “Ye are the salt of the earth… Ye are the light of the world” (Matthew 5:13-16). He was saying that we are to make this world thirsty for God. We are to lighten our world to see Jesus. Once we become a follower of Jesus, He wants us to share that message with others.
Living like Jesus means we engage in people’s lives. We make ourselves available. You never know what’s going to happen. Your day might start out average and routine, and then God brings a situation so you can either show Jesus or tell Jesus to others. Just a simple conversation could change someone’s eternal destination. When you are motivated, available, and prayerful, you never know what God will do.
God wants to use ordinary people in extraordinary ways. He wants to use all of us – ordinary Christians – to point people to Him.
So how should you live in a way that God takes you on adventures and you can explain this good news to others? When we study the life of Jesus, we can learn lessons about how to be salt and light in our world.
Notice three lessons you can learn by asking, “What if Jesus lived in my house? What would he do? How would he interact with my neighbors?”
If Jesus lived in my house, before he talked to his neighbors about the Heavenly Father, he would talk to his Heavenly Father about his neighbors.
Jesus would pray. Before Jesus did anything, He brought it to the Father in prayer. In fact, in Jesus’ closing breaths on the cross he was praying for the salvation of those who were killing Him.
We can’t force someone, through our prayers, to become a follower of Christ. But our prayers make a difference.
Never give up praying for someone. Who in your life do you love and want them to come to Jesus? Maybe you’ve stopped praying for them. Today as that person comes to mind, pray that God would give you the opportunity to have a spiritual conversation.
Here’s a convicting question: If God were to answer every prayer you prayed last week, would there be anybody new in His kingdom?
2 – Talk Like Jesus
If Jesus lived in my house, he would let the neighbors know the door is always open for questions.
I think Jesus would say, “Do you have a doubt, objection, obstacle? Come on in. We’ll talk about it.” I can’t think of anywhere in the New Testament where Jesus shunned anyone with a sincere question.
An interesting exchange happened in the New Testament. If anyone knew the identity of Jesus it was John the Baptist. It was John who pointed to Jesus and said, “Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world” John baptized Jesus and saw heaven open and God’s voice saying He was pleased with Jesus. But after he was put in prison he had doubts. “Are you the one who is to come, or should we expect someone else” was his question he sent to Jesus. How did Jesus react? Did he get angry? No. In Luke 7:22 he simply said, ‘Go back and tell John about the evidence you see. I am who I claim to be.’ It’s okay to have questions and doubts, as long as we seek anssers. That’s why our church and our church members should be a safe place where believers and spiritual seekers are free to be honest about doubts. That’s why we’ve done this series and went to the movie.
So invite spiritually curious friends and neighbors into a safe environment where they can engage, listen, be loved and respected on their journey toward Jesus.
If Jesus lived in my house, he would live out an authentic faith.
Talk is cheap. But real faith is more than just words. Jesus didn’t say He loved the world; he showed it by being a servant. He served the blind by restoring sight, he served lepers by restoring health, and in his ultimate servanthood, he gave his life to pay for the sins of the world.
When we sacrificially serve others as Jesus did, it opens up hearts otherwise closed to the Gospel. Remember Matthew 5:16: “Let you light shine before men that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in Heaven.” Our authentic acts of service are attractive and can draw others to Christ.
What do your neighbors need? Serving those around us is one way of living out our faith. The other is to make sure your behavior matches your belief. If your neighbors know you are a Christian, and if they know you go to church, what do they see? Do they see a holier-than-thou attitude, a phoney smile that pretends everything is great when it’s not? Or do they see a life that matches your faith?
How do we share this good news with others? We don’t have to be ‘Super Christian’? We can simply be sinners saved by grace. We can pray for others, talk with them about their tough questions, and find ways to serve the people around us.
When we do, we open the door to God’s unexpected adventures and the opportunities He orchestrates for us to explain the truth of Christ to others.