I want to tell you a story about my granddad.
He was a building contractor.
He was approached with an offer to make a ton of money.
All he needed to do was substitute an inferior product in the walls of the building. The replacement was out of sight; no one would know.
He’d pocket the difference between what he said he would do and what he would actually do.
He went to his dad’s office to ask for advice. But just looking at his dad, he had the answer. He didn’t need to be told what to do. He just needed to look his father in the eye.
I think about all the ways Christians come up with ways to substitute genuine Christianity with an inferior product so they can pocket the difference.
Go ahead and say out loud what your plans are. Direct your eyes to look upon your Heavenly Father’s face.
In his holy presence, as he looks at you with love, do your plans make any sense at all?
Stop making compromises.
Do what is absolutely, honestly right.
Ooof, I like this, although it presents an uncomfortable challenge. I see the cheap replacement product as synonymous to a watered down gospel. I have been challenged with the thought this week that I play it safe when sharing my faith with people in the New Age community. I stick to acceptable spiritual terms. They’re very happy to hear about God, about Jesus, and about spiritual journeys. Do I faithfully say that Jesus is the only way and that their other spiritual pathways are dead ends or do I stay in my comfort zone? Do I hide behind the excuse that “I’m building my relationship with them so that I can share the full gospel later when our friendship is more established”? When will I reach that point? Should I be more forthright or is it right to sensitively navigate this on-going conversation? If I overdo it, will I sever our relationship and then fail to demonstrate the gospel to them another time? I haven’t all the answers to these questions although I sense what the answer to some might be. Praying for boldness that I won’t compromise, and that I’m only concerned what my Father thinks of me rather than anyone else’s opinion.
Those are great questions. I think the #1 question is: will this build trust? Or, to put it in another way: how can I be a good friend right now?
I think if we get too wrapped up in tactics, strategy, or effectiveness, we can spin around in circles. I do this myself!
But I think we can just be friends with people, and tell them about our faith as it comes up. And then trust God for the results.
I acknowledge it’s complicated. Perhaps as you still sort through, well, am I rationalizing away being courageous, or am I being too aggressive, it can help to write down your thoughts so you can look at them all together?