The moment you hit the ‘New Post’ button, you are not allowed to close it, nor are you allowed to delete it. You came here, you wanted to write, so damn it, write.
Yup, that sounds like a good rule for me. What’s holding me back is this fear that what I think and what I believe still has such a huge gap in between the life that we all live together. In other words, I’m pretty insecure that my writings, for a couple of years now, have sounded foreign, even alien, to this world. Definitely an issue that I need to address, seeing as we were emboldened to be salt and light in this world, and not licorice (there was a time in my life when I just thought the taste of licorice was literally awkward.. really, confusing more than actually tasty).
I can see how it must be hard to be an ambassador. Timothy Keller defined an ambassador as one who represented a country in another country, from a particular country with its own language, culture and mindset, yet simultaneously adept in the language, culture and mindset of the country he is assigned to – a bridge between two nations. If you don’t know how to eat and speak with the locals, then consider yourself a tourist and a visitor, not an ambassador.
I used to be a huge sucker for statement shirts. I truly believed that my existence and my entire being could be represented by a witty quip and a crude illustration. It carried on, even when I made that decision to ‘be more serious’ with my Christianity… and you can see how a whole bunch of us really find it helpful in our baby steps of belief to wear exactly what we profess.
One of the brands that I thought was quite witty and accurate in terms of what I had in my mind at the time was the NOTW brand, short for ‘Not Of This World’. At the time, I guess the designs which resembled the Affliction/TapOut designs (all the rage more than 10 years ago) were a good idea for me to wear too.. and when it came to looking cool and/or making and leaving a statement, unfortunately, I achieved neither. Now that I think of it, I’m not sure it was a good idea to go into the world with a shirt that said we were not of this world. Lines like ‘Take me to your leader’ (spoken in a robotic voice) suddenly come into mind.
Then I found out that (1) there are better ways to get attention, and eventually (2) I have all the attention I need from God, because of what Christ did for me. This meant that I no longer spoke the way I spoke in order for me to be accepted, but slowly and surely the fact that Christ did everything for God not just to accept but to reunite me to His love – this Truth became the foundation out of where I started speaking.
To be an ambassador, apparently you don’t go around the foreign land telling them that you are not one of them. That doesn’t make you an ambassador, nor does it even make you a tourist – it makes you a critic. On the other hand, it doesn’t help that you integrate yourself too much with the locals. The advantage there is that you become one of them, but the disadvantage there is that you become one of them. You become identified as a local, with ‘ambassador’ as a mere title, and nothing more.
Christian, it’s not that you tell people that you aren’t of this world.. you were called a Christian because you are of Christ. You don’t go around telling people what you don’t do, imposing what they shouldn’t do. No, you are able to sit down with them, eat with them, laugh with them, cry with them.. you are able to love them at a level they see and appreciate, because you come with the confidence that you are of Christ.
In my particular case, I find myself free from the bondage of religion which imposes demands in order for you to be accepted. I find myself free from joining the world in stating the obvious darkness which is becoming more and more pervasive… but on the other hand, I also find myself free from having to generate ‘light’ in order to ‘combat’ this said darkness – I find myself free from forcibly shoving doctrine and words down the throats of the people that I meet, in order for me to ‘win one more soul for Jesus’..
..No, I am now free, because of who Christ is and what Christ did for me, to live, and to live abundantly, and to have my being, knowing that no matter what happens to me, and no matter what I do, Christ will ALWAYS be my light, and every day becomes brighten unto the new day, every day is made sweeter than the day before.
Peter Gibbons, from the movie Office Space, he had this to day to an occupational hypnotherapist – ‘every day is the worst day of my life.’
Not so, not so with Christ. Smile.