“Blessed are those who keep His testimonies, Who seek Him with the whole heart!”
Psalms 119:2 NKJV
Show and tell
So many of us, who have tasted such a great salvation of God, keep silent about what the Lord has done in our lives. Others of us give a glorious, exaggerated picture of the workings of God. We too often size others up based on our perception of what a good Christian is, by what we are doing. We fail to show the grace and the loving kindnesses, not by the words but by the deeds that reveal our true hearts.
We live in a world that is awash in depravity and surrounded by many people who have become damaged and traumatized. When I began this walk, I was one who had a lots of scars and open wounds. My sin had brought much destruction, and the sin done to me had destabilized me. Early on I looked about to the believers, to hear what God had done in them. Most said little about their own journeys. Others gave fantastic descriptions of miracles and gave an air of spiritual perfection. Even fewer demonstrated the work the Lord had done. I also had people who judged me. They were expecting me to suddenly be this “good Christian.”
I felt powerless. My strongholds were huge and I could not begin to imagine how they could be brought low. I kept silent and sought to travel under the radar, as to not be seen. I wondered if I would ever have the kind of testimony that brought glory to God. Then came understanding.
“For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus.”
Philippians 1:6 NASB
Suddenly I had an understanding that the timetable was not mine. Nor was it set by others. He was in control. He was going to do His work as He saw fit. As I began to see the huge boulders of sinful stronghold crumble and fall, I could see the bright light on the horizon, beyond the obstacles. I also had a desire to share what was going on. I went through a period of radical transparency. I showed my flaws, and shared my victories.
My life was like a dilapidated house being flipped. My floors sagged, my woodwork was dull, and there was mold all over the place. During the demo I remained silent. Once the house was gutted, I put up bright lights and led tours. In the midst of it all, I kept telling people what was going to be and not what was. I never exaggerated about the state of things, I also spoke up.
It also changed how I see others.
We keep the Lord’s testimonies when we exemplify with our lives, who He is. We show the lovingkindness of God, and adhere to His truths. He fills our lives and all that comes from it. I not only testify with my lips what He has done, but I demonstrate it with my life. I make an effort to listen and receive people where they are, not where I think they should be.
People crave authenticity. They want to see what God is really doing in your life. They don’t want pretty pictures, they don’t want an absence of evidence. We are surrounded by watchers. This is especially true now.
When I look at the work being done in the lives of others, I am reminded daily, of the need to show grace. Those of us in the beginning are deeply moved and disrupted by the changes God is making. This pandemic is trying time for believer and non believers alike. Now is a good time to share.
I think people keep silent, because the change from this moving of the Lord is beyond the vocabulary they have to describe all that is happening. I was like that. During the first five years of my journey with Jesus, I kept my mouth shut. He was gutting the walls of my house. When the demo was done, I opened my mouth. In the midst of this external, world wide renovation, I have a voice.
I also give grace to the quiet, I seek to encourage. I am blessed when they begin to take those small steps of testimony, as the Lord begins to mature them.
I have also learned to use discernment with those on the other end of the spectrum. I am a watcher as well. When I hear people speak in glowing terms, I am looking for evidence. I listen, I pray. This season of uncertainty is driving the inside out, revealing the work that God is doing in all of us. I think that is why He ordained it to happen.
We are living in a time when we are to show and tell. People want to hear and they want to see. They want to know of something certain in a time of uncertainty.
I find that I can only show and tell from a life that is dedicated to God with no limits. The Lord demolished my rooms when He began rebuilding my house. Few are the locked away places, rooms where I hide the sins that, in the past, delighted me. My heart has become like a great room, open to God. I seek Him with more and more of my heart. The process has been messy, but the blessing is overwhelming.
Believers, now is the time to show and tell. Time to dig out that great shiny salvation and bring it to the school of life!
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