People respond to images.
Earlier this morning, the nominations were announced for the Academy awards with eager anticipation. These awards give nods of approval for those who successfully portray images of characters outside of themselves for the enjoyment of millions. http://www.msn.com/en-us/movies/oscars/oscar-nominations-2015-the-complete-list/ar-AA8cn4U?ocid=iehp
This contrasts to the recent tragic consequences of the French magazine Charlie Hebdo. Its pages satirized the image of Mohammed which caused great offense to Muslim followers. In response, the magazine recently released on its cover a drawing of Mohammed with a tear falling down his cheek with the words, “All is Forgiven.” http://www.cnn.com/2015/01/13/living/muslims-respond-hebdo/
Images are important.
For Christians who place their trust entirely on the works of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of their sins and take God’s at His Word, they are a reflection of God’s love and His message to the world. Christians are not only called upon to declare the true gospel message, but to live it. It really doesn’t matter how the world chooses to portray the image of Christ. He can be ridiculed and disdained. He can be called a fool or a liar. These accusations or characterizations are nothing new. In fact, they are to be expected.
Those who have rooted themselves in Christ will reflect the image of Christ. The fruits of love, hope, joy, and peace radiate from a Spirit-filled confidence that boldly declares “God endures forever!”
The Christian life is not a portrayal of Christ based on our efforts to be like Him. Instead, it is a life in Christ based on the Spirit’s effort to be Him.
We can pray,
“O Lord, despite opposition from the world, you call us to be your reflection, your light, your image when the room darkens and while people are watching. You have not called us to be actors or actresses, but to be real, sincere in our walk in you. Let us recognize the importance of images today, because people respond to images. Guard and guide our words and actions. And when opportunities arise, share Your words of salvation and the basis of our hope, our peace, and our security in You. Thank you, Lord. Amen.”
Yes, good or bad, people respond to images. So, let’s be that light, be salt, be the house that is on top of a hill when darkness descends. People are watching, observing, contemplating those who confess and proclaim they have placed their trust in Christ. Let’s be mindful of that today and witness well – by remaining in Christ and reflecting an image outside of ourselves.