Many years ago, I remember being asked “who are you when no-one is watching?” It came as a bit of a challenge at the time because I could not say, hand on heart, that my private life quite lived up to my public life. There were never massive issues in my life, but there were a number of niggling issues that over time were compromising my genuine heart’s desire to live a sold out life for Christ. What we choose to do with our private lifestyle, when no one is watching will either mean that our public lives go from strength to strength, or it will mean that we end up having an increasingly limited ability to live well. And, what I have discovered over many years of following Jesus is that our ability to consistently live well is basically determined by the amount of time we spend with God in His Word.
A while back I needed to rent a hire car for a trip down to South Wales. I went online and booked the car, specified the time I needed to pick it up and then arrived at that agreed time. I was greeted less than enthusiastically by a lady behind the counter. As I remember there was no hello offered, no thank you as I handed over my driving licence and debit card and literally one-word answers to any questions that I asked.
Then came the time when all the paperwork was done, and I was taken to the car. I sat in the driver’s seat and the lady serving me sat in the passenger seat. As I was signing to say that I had done all the checks, I found myself asking the lady the following question:
“Forgive me for asking, but it sounds like you are having a bad day—is everything OK?”
The lady’s reply opened the door for Jesus to enter the situation when she thanked me and then asked me why I would even be interested. I told her that I was interested in her welfare simply because God was even more interested in her. We spoke about a value that we have at CVM namely that as a follower of Jesus Christ “I will treat all men and women as brothers and sisters,” and that this attitude toward others is fuelled by the fact that God sent His only son to sacrifice Himself for us all because He loves us (John 3:16).
The conversation lasted for a good few minutes. It was one of those rare moments when you can feel an atmosphere change palpably and I know that for this one person the day ahead was very different from its start. And, it was all down to Jesus coming into her situation and circumstances.
The conversation finished with me telling her that God loved her and that as a Christian I loved her too and wanted her to know who Jesus really is. She smiled and said “Thank you”
I really do not know whether this lady thought about Jesus anymore after our conversation, but I do know that Jesus gave her an opportunity to reach out to him. And as he promises to do, he used me in this situation.
And what about us, as Christ-followers?
Well, as we spend more and more time with God “when no-one else is looking”, reading His Word, praying for God to use our words and actions, our private life naturally spills over into all our public encounters. It is just a simple law of spiritual nature.
And on the back of that we have but one more decision to make each and every day:
“I will unashamedly make Him known through my actions and words.” Code III
Why check out ‘Living by The Code’ at: https://www.codelife.org
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