by Pete Schrank
My faith is very important to me but I can say that I do not walk around asking people “Do you know Jesus?” “Are you saved?” “Do you have a personal relationship with Christ?” That does not mean when I am asked about my faith or through my daily action I don’t strive to show I am a Christian. I do believe that we all need to stand and deliver. Deliver that powerful simple message of by faith alone, by grace alone, through Christ alone we are saved.
I have been blessed to have a job that allowed me to travel to many locations around the world and meet many people. I wear a crucifix every day that is very visible to all those I meet. After 10 years of wearing a tie to work, business has gone casual. I hope that this crucifix is something that sparks a question or a conversation about faith.
I have been to China were religion is not a wide spread practice. I have visited Ireland where people take their Easter food to the church to be blessed and the Catholic Church is a big part of people’s life. Also to Europe where the great cathedrals sit empty except as tourist attractions, with an average Sunday attendance of 5%. My last trip before retirement was to India where it appears that people are so poor all they have is their faith. I have talked to a Muslim about the Holy Trinity. I have been asked by someone in China why I am a Christian. I talked to Hindu believes about the lord Ganesh (one of the 100,000 gods of the Hindu faith). I have had great conversations with Catholics here in the US about purgatory and Martin Luther. I have had conversations with atheists who tell me my faith is foolishness and a fairy tale. In a recent Concordia Bible study it was stated that there are over 4,000 different religions in the world. We humans are built to seek God.
The purpose of this article is to encourage all of us to witness for our Lutheran Faith. This witness may come in many different forms, some direct questions, sharing a statement of faith and/or by our actions and attitude. Sometimes we feel uncomfortable about these opportunities or insecure about our ability to be an effective witness. We just need to remember that we have the Holy Spirit inside of us to help say and do the right things. The Holy Spirit as shared by Paul in Galatians 5:22-25 states But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit.
Remember we are Christians 24/7; being God’s hands, feet, and witness is what we do. There are great opportunities to witness everyday.