Suggested Scripture(s): 2 Corinthians 3:3
I once heard a minister from Denison, Texas on a radio “thought for the day” speak of how people prefer different translations or paraphrases of the Bible. The minister then reminded his listeners that regardless of what “version” of the Bible we read, our application of God’s Word to our lives is what is most important. In fact, we might even be “…the only Bible some folks will ever read…,” the minister suggested as he concluded his thoughts.
Those words reminded me of a verse of Scripture in the New Testament written by the Apostle Paul: “You are a letter from Christ…” (2 Corinthians 3:3). Other language used in the New Testament by Paul includes words like being “ambassadors” for Christ. In other words, we are Christ’s representatives, his letters of recommendation.
So I need to periodically ask myself, “How well do I recommend Christ in my life?” How well is Christ represented to my family and relatives, friends, fellow church members, work associates, and most importantly, strangers? This is because people observe how a Christian handles stress, hurt, suffering, being cheated, and the treatment of those people considered by the world to be un-loveable.
People also be observe how a believer reacts when a garment is torn accidentally, has someone barge in front at the grocery check-out, when getting splashed by a rude driver passing by in a rainstorm, or during crisis or tragedy. We are indeed Christ’s letters of recommendation.
And even though there is no way we can ever perfectly represent Jesus, we can still consider thinking about what kind of words do our “letters” contain: words and actions of care, sympathy, kindness, and tough love when the truth needs to be told; or words of hurt, arrogance, false witness, gossip, rudeness, rejection, or conceit? It is no surprise that statistics still show that most people who join a church do so because someone personally invited them through their words and/or actions.
It is through Christ’s disciples by the power of the Holy Spirit that Jesus has chosen to communicate the Gospel. Jesus is God’s Word made flesh, and we are his letters of recommendation and ambassadors. What a privilege – what a responsibility.