It’s Monday and you, Christian, have an awesome privilege and responsibility. You are going to represent Jesus to your family, your friends, your world.
A friend who has walked through deep disappointment in her life, told a story of an encounter she had. She is an American and a Christian who speaks Arabic. (that’s another story!) In a visit to Walmart in middle America, she saw woman was covered head to toe in typical Islamic dress. The woman’s husband stepped away for a moment and so my friend spoke to the woman in Arabic. The woman responded and phone numbers got exchanged. Later in the week, my friend met up with her new acquaintance and found a lonely, discouraged woman, dealing with family troubles. My friend considered it a privilege to share friendship with this family that knew next to nothing about Christianity! All from an encounter at a Walmart checkout.
Remember, that you, too, are an ambassador of Christ’s realm! Wherever you go this week, stay aware of the Spirit and others for God has credentialed you (and me!) to represent Him. Read this commission carefully even though you may be familiar with it. “God … gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting men’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God. God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.” (2 Corinthians 5:18-21, NIV) God uses people just like us to change the course of life for others, to offer His love and hope through us!
Paul talks about one of the ways we represent Christ in this world. He says that as we move through life, we leave a scent! To some, it’s a sweet fragrance. To others, it’s the stink of death! Read this text carefully – “And I got it, thank God! In the Messiah, in Christ, God leads us from place to place in one perpetual victory parade. Through us, he brings knowledge of Christ. Everywhere we go, people breathe in the exquisite fragrance. Because of Christ, we give off a sweet scent rising to God, which is recognized by those on the way of salvation—an aroma redolent with life. But those on the way to destruction treat us more like the stench from a rotting corpse. This is a terrific responsibility. Is anyone competent to take it on?” (2 Corinthians 2:14-16, The Message)
So, I encourage you to spend time in the Presence of God, bathing in His love, His sweetness so that the ‘fragrance’ you leave behind today represents Him in all His wonder! Will people ‘smell’ the sweet perfume of the holiness of Jesus on you? Paul asks, “And who is adequate for such a task as this?” You see, we can’t splash on a little “Jesus” perfume to cover the stink of persistent and deliberate disobedience or hypocrisy! The fragrance of Christ permeates our lives ONLY WHEN we have spent time with Him, soaking in His Spirit which lets His character be created in us! Sit down and rest in His Presence. Invite Him to live in you. Then, your inadequacy will be wrapped and covered by His Presence. The ‘fragrance’ that trails you will be the sweet smell of LIFE, both pleasing to God and those who love Him!
Be His ambassador, not a noisy, pushy voice, but rather a persistent, beautiful influence that turns the hearts of others towards the One who loves them deeply. Pray to be so filled with Jesus that you leave behind an unforgettable impression on others through you today.
A word from the Word – live it! Jesus said, “Peace be with you! As the Father has sent me, I am sending you.” And with that he breathed on them and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit.” (John 20:21-22)
Let the beauty of Jesus be seen in me,
All His wonderful passion and purity.
O my Savior divine, all my nature refine,
‘Till the beauty of Jesus be seen in me.
– Albert Orbson, public domain