"So," they say, "nobody's perfect!"
But the Vinedresser won't buy that.
Given the opportunity, He will trim the unproductive suckers and shape the branches so each one will bask in Sonlight.

Tuesday, November 08, 2011

Today's Our Daily Bread suggests Christ-followers make great neighbors. No, that's not Joe Stowell's exact message, but one effect of living according to the Scripture passage he refers to, or for that matter, the entire New Testament. As in all areas of life, we need balance to truly demonstrate Christ's love with our lives. We're to live separated from the world's values, not isolated from the very world to which he ordered us to minister his gospel.
An example is "stepping fancy," or dancing, which some Christian sects forbid as sinful. Yet, the Contra Dance I participated in the other evening involved people from five to seventy-five years of age. It was a fun, wholesome, family activity providing music, exercise, and socialization. And opportunity to share Christ's wonderful news with our neighbors.
That's where balance steps in; while that dance might have presented witnessing opportunities, it was mainly a fun, family time. Even though we rightly feel an urgency about introducing folks to our Savior, we should, as Paul told us in Colossians 4:5, walk in wisdom toward those who do not share our faith, while redeeming the time we spend with them.
Simply stated, most outsiders are put off by our love- motivated desperation to see them saved, viewing it as a crass desire to score conversions. We can't help how our neighbors react to others' Bible-thumping, but we can certainly persevere in loving them to Christ.

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