Topic: 1 Peter 3:13
"Be ready to speak up and tell anyone who asks why you're living the way you are, and always with the utmost courtesy." 1 Peter 3:13 (The Message)
In a recent conversation with a successful businessman, he described how he encourages his Christian colleagues to live and work in a secular environment where a verbal expression of faith may not be welcome or even allowed. His advice, however, should not be limited to the nine-to-five, frequently harsh business world. How can we be "evangelists" in whatever community in which we find ourselves? This man says, "Live a life that invites inquiry."
Am I living my faith in such a supernatural way that people are dazed by my reliance upon God? Do my neighbors see unselfish acts quite out of character with the prevailing culture? Do I courteously relate to my family?
Paul and his friend Silas were privileged to hear that kind of question. They had been beaten and jailed for talking about Jesus but their response was nothing short of miraculous. Instead of whining or beating on the bars of their cell door, at midnight they were praying and "singing hymns to God." Suddenly God intervened with an earthquake that shook open the prison doors. Perhaps it was both the earthquake and the men's obvious trust in God that elicited the jailer's question: "What must I do to be saved, to really live?" (Acts 16:30, The Message)
When was the last time a friend asked, "What IS it with you? How can you keep going? Why do you seem content when your world is crumbling?" This is not to suggest that we hide our difficulties from onlookers, but what a thrill it is when we allow God to produce supernatural love, joy, peace and patience in the face of trial-responses that invite inquiry.
Father God, grace me with the desire, willingness and ability to live a life that invites inquiry. Help me trust you to put the right words in my mouth at the right times.
When was the last time a friend asked you about your faith? What was your response? Read 1 Peter 3:12-14 for encouragement.