SHINE LIKE STARS

Admittedly, I’m missing sports desperately. Like, more than I probably should be missing it. With the lack of sports, I’ve reached my quota of HGTV home improvement ideas. I can only take so much of HGTV so I’ve found myself on social media more. It feels I’ve reached the same usage rate I had back when I was in college.

You’re reading this devotion, so most likely you spend some amount of time on social media. Psst…listen close…it’s scary out there. Tensions are undoubtedly high in our country right now and much of that is understandable with so much uncertainty in so many areas.

We may not be able to control our circumstances but one thing we can control is our response to those circumstances. In case you’ve missed it, social media is currently full of anger, bitterness, complaints, hate, short tempers, unfriending, blocking, negativity, and the like. I’m not advocating you to abandon social media, but perhaps our mindset can be better ready before entering hostile environments.

One of my favorite scriptures comes from Paul writing in Philippians 2:14-15 “Do everything without complaining or arguing, so that no one can criticize you. Live clean, innocent lives as children of God, shining like bright lights in a world full of crooked and perverse people.

A hard concept for Christians to grasp is we are not responsible for policing the actions of non-believers and making sure they behave according to the Bible. We Christ followers are responsible for ourselves first, and also encouraging other believers to follow Jesus as closely as possible.  If someone doesn’t follow Jesus, I cannot expect them to stick to the same biblical morals that I have.

Bottom line, I am responsible for my own spiritual fruit. Jesus said in Matthew 7:17-20 “A good tree produces good fruit, and a bad tree produces bad fruit. A good tree can’t produce bad fruit, and a bad tree can’t produce good fruit. So every tree that does not produce good fruit is chopped down and throw into the fire. Yes, just as you can identify a tree by its fruit, so you can identify people by their fruit.

People always “have their eye on” Christians to see if they “put their money where their mouth is.” People are watching even more so right now. With little on TV and many activities cancelled. Rise above the noise and do not confuse others with misrepresentation of Jesus.

People are responsible for their own actions. That includes us Christ followers. Cling to that Philippians verse and rise above and shine like a bright light in the midst of some darkness.

For more thoughts on good and bad fruit, open your Bible to Galatians 5:16-26.

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Central Christian Church | Mount Vernon, Illinois