Perception can be a nuisance for believers in Christ because so much of the world around us displays Christians as some hate filled, hypocritical group. That is not the truth, but some people cannot be convinced otherwise.
In the New Testament we meet a man who was a persecutor of Christians. In fact, he was one of the worst of them. God interrupts his life and He takes a major turn in his life. He becomes a committed follower of Jesus and people take note. Word started to spread about this former killer of Christians turned Christian. People were curious and even a little cautious. Yet, what does Paul say?
“And they praise God because of me.” – Galatians 1:24
That is an incredible statement of forgiveness and unity found only in Christ. It tells us that the main thing was not what he used to do. The main thing was that he had met Jesus and his life was now vastly different. That is exciting!
As you being your day today I wonder how much people are praising God because of you. I ask that question because I am thinking about the same thing. Is my life a cause for others, even those who maybe don’t even know Jesus, to praise God?
I know that our current church situation provides for us opportunities to display the grace of God to the community. We are glad for the opportunity but certainly don’t want to take any praise. We are who we are because of Jesus Christ. All praise goes to Him!
Ultimately the only way perceptions of Christians are going to change is if we all live so that Jesus is seen in us. If that happens people will praise God.