by David Phelps

"Do not wait for leaders; do it alone, person to person." - Mother Teresa

August, 1996

Recently, I was talking to my co-worker, Jane. At one point, she said, "I used to go to church every Sunday, but then I found out the truth." I wondered briefly what she was talking about: Atheism? Scientology? Something else? I'm always a little leery whenever someone talks about finding the truth. This is especially so if the truth has led them away from the church. After a moment, Jane continued, "I found out the minister was fooling around with the church secretary, and they were both married."

"Jane," I replied, "you can't look at other people, because they'll let you down. You need to look at Jesus; if you do he'll never let you down."

Turn your eyes upon Jesus. This is the message we are called to bring to the world. Unfortunately, too many people turn their attention to the messenger, or become distracted by other things. Our special duty as messengers of the gospel is to live so that others can see our message in our lives as well as hear it in our words. Christianity is one area where a few "bad apples" have made a severe impact on the way people see all the others. Jane turned away from the church because of the actions of just two people. In our continual witness to others, we have a responsibility to turn their eyes, their minds, and their hearts upon Jesus. But first they need to see Jesus in us.

"'I have appeared to you for this purpose, to appoint you to serve and bear witness to the things in which you have seen me and to those in which I will appear to you . . . to open their eyes, that they may turn from darkness to light and from the power of Satan to God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins and a place among those who are sanctified by faith in me.'" (Acts 26:16b,18 RSV.)


Copyright © 1996 by Maplewood UMC