We live in a day where religion is suspect at best and feared and opposed at worst.
I think we have to accept, in America, that we Christians are in part to blame, or at least we’ve hastened the demise of the goodwill and the generic word “religion.”
Even the word “Christian” needs a little redeeming, don’t you think? I call myself a Christian. For many people that’s a political statement. It’s an anti-gay, or anti-abortion, or anti-democrat statement. It’s been used to support and defend racism, violence, hate, and even greed.
So we stand here today with our churches, seminaries, our books, our music, and our messages. But the question still remains after all this time, “How are Christians different, and why is the difference worth embracing?”
That’s a big question, but let me offer part of the answer. One of the best things those of us who call ourselves followers of Jesus, the Renegade from Nazareth who changed the world by His radical love, can do is to live Christianly.
So how do you live Christianly? I am sure many of us can answer that but let me offer one. And that is to begin to be men and women who make things, things that work, who make things that people want to buy, who create as our Heavenly Father, companies, businesses, families, ideas, charter school, on and on the list can go; to make something of ourselves, to even be artisans of crafts and trades that once were respected in this country.
It was Jesus who said, “Let them see your good works and then praise your Father in Heaven.” The question is, what do we make that they can see, and what are we making of our lives that is worth seeing? Don’t the statistics tell us that Christian families, Christian fathers, mothers, teenagers who go to youth groups really have no distinguishable difference in the way they live? This is where we need to focus some of our attention, isn’t it?
We serve a Divine Maker a Redeemer, Restorer. Let’s do that. Let’s make something of our relationships, our families, our children. Let’s make something of our neighborhoods and our communities. Let’s make something beautiful of our churches and even our businesses. Everyone wins when we do.