Just then His disciples returned and were surprised to find Him talking with a woman.
Much of the world hates Christians. Even so, Jesus sent us to the world, because lost people still need to be found. To reach them, good diplomatic skills are essential.
I know, because I was lost... for 51 years. Back story: I was raised as a cultural Christian in a grand church, where business and social leaders gathered. Surely, important connections were made, but they didn't seem connected with Christ.
Nevertheless, I sought purpose and became a Buddhist for two years. But in one way they resembled Christians: They considered themselves superior, so I left. Decades followed of believing in God, but I avoided born-again Christians. Because I'd met some who seemed to be...
1) Arrogant, looking down on outsiders.
2) Phony, speaking phrases that sounded trite.
3) Churchy, parading in stiff Sunday clothes.
4) Self-absorbed, walking past lonely people.
5) Hateful, speaking cutting words of insult.
6) Disconnected from the world and from me.
7) Bickering between denominations.
8) Denouncing every other religion.
9) Condemning people for things I'd done, too.
10) Living like millionaires on widows' tithes.
11) Spending lavishly on fancy churches.
12) Hanging in cliques where I was unwelcome.
13) Quoting the Bible to their advantage.
14) Speaking in tongues that seemed crazy to me.
15) Misrepresenting Christ--IF He was real.
I apologize for this ugly list. But if you were born and raised in the faith, and the Lord has sent you into the world, you need to know what many outsiders think...
Actors, models and talent for Christ: You're called to be surprising Christians:* removing the world's misconceptions to reveal the true heart of Jesus. Since you serve a Lord Who loves new things, shake off the shingles of churchy-ness, which is more harmful than worldliness. Because the world doesn't claim Jesus, the world can't harm His reputation.
The best way to clear it up? Do good.
## Do-Gooders: Erase Misconceptions (Part 9)
* Previous 2-Part Devotion Series, Surprising Christians: http://careylewisdevotions.com/surprising-christians-part-1
* Previous Devotion, All Things New (Part 1): http://careylewisdevotions.com/all-things-new-part-1-revelation
* Previous Devotion, The Enemy's Game (Part 61), Countermeasures: Water: http://careylewisdevotions.com/the-enemys-game-part-61-countermeasures-water
NOTE: This series is a republished edit of a 2016 series called, 'Do-Gooders.' In these devotions, you may see notes to 'Actors, Models & Talent for Christ.' I have not changed this designation. Because in a greater sense, every disciple of Christ acts for Christ, models Christ and stewards His talents, from which God expects a profit.
P.S. To read the other devotions in this series, please see the Do-Gooders series.