Sunday, February 8, 2009

Perception is Reality

When I was young I heard my elders say, "You know, that just does not look right." In business we say, "That does not pass the smell test." Both of these statements mean the same thing. Something is not right about the situation. Many times we listen to the words of those around us and somehow manage to get the message confused. We do not hear what the person is trying to say, but hear what we think they said.

Sadly enough, this happens more often than not. The truth about reality is that it changes from person to person depending on the personal experiences and lifestyle events of each individual in the mix. Keeping the story straight can be a problem if two people whose point of reference is so different that they talk but do not understand each other.

As Christians, it is our responsibility to look beyond appearances to find the real person beneath the layers of defensiveness and pain that passes for self-assurance. It is easy to believe the worst about a person because of the way they look. We forget that appearances are deceiving and everything about a person may not be revealed the first time we meet.

We as Christians have a wonderful opportunity to change ourselves first, and then show the love of God to the world around us. We have an obligation to allow the reflection of the Grace of God to show through us to the world and everyone with whom we come in contact. It will be difficult sometimes because of the perception that some people have about Christians and who Christians really are.

Mark 16:15
And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.

The Great Commission that Jesus gave to his followers in Mark did not mean that we should take a sledge hammer or a sword to everyone who refused to believe in Him. That is not the way of Jesus Christ. Jesus offered a better way.

Matthew 5:16
In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.

Try to show forth the love of God in your life and allow the perception you want people to have of who you are become a reality. The more you try to live like Jesus Christ, the more people will see Jesus in you. It is not necessary to proclaim to the world that you are a Christian. If you are a Christian they will know it soon enough.

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