Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Set on a Hill

One evening, shortly after we moved to our present home, we were coming home after dark.
As we neared our freeway exit, I was looking out the car window gazing at our mountainside community in the distance. Its lights were brightly shining, making it clearly visible from a long way off.
We had moved from a very private property tucked away at the end of a dead end street. Even if the lights were on, it was hidden from view until we drove up the driveway.
Looking up at our new home, I suddenly had an uncomfortable feeling of being vulnerable and exposed.
I realized that there was nothing I could do about it….the builder and designer of the community had chosen to set it up on a mountain where it could not be hidden. Anyone choosing to live there had to accept that fact.

Suddenly, Jesus' words echoed in my mind. “You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden.”
(Matt. 5:14)
Jesus' words were suddenly illuminated in a way I had noticed before.

After working for years in a retail department store, the one message I would like to impress upon every Christian is …
”Be careful how you act. Be careful how you react. Be careful of the words you use! When you least expect it....You are being watched!”

I was continually baffled at how the non-Christian staff members always knew which customers were Christians and they watched them closely to see if their walk and talk matched their profession. It was almost as though there were inside informers whose sole job was to point out to non-believers which people professed to be Christians – for the purpose of giving cause to scoff at Christianity and mock God.
Does scripture itself not address this?
“By this deed you have given great occasion to the enemies of the Lord to blaspheme…”
(II Sam. 12:14)
Paul repeats this sobering accusation in Romans 2:24 – “For ‘The name of God is blasphemed among the Gentiles because of you’ as it is written.”

I suddenly saw why there is no such thing as a secret Christian --- Christians have nowhere to hide!!
Why?
Because the builder and designer of the Kingdom of God has ‘set it on a hill where it cannot be hidden’.
God’s light in you and me is shining out from a high place and cannot help but attract attention – as light shining in a dark world.
We are a people of light, set upon “Mt. Zion, the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem!!” (Heb. 12:22)

Someone once said, “When you take the name of Christian, God puts His reputation on the line.”
We have no where to hide. Our faith is a 24/7 lit-up display ……. Either we glorify God or we tarnish His reputation.
Either way we WILL be noticed!
"For you were once darkness but now you are light in the Lord.
Walk as children of light!!"
(Eph. 5:8)

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

Right on!! We often think that we only effect ourselves. Wrong!! When we least expect it we are being watched and could be the stumbling block that keeps someone from eternal life!

jaj

Laura said...

I love your pearls and daily encouragements. Thank you!

Lovella said...

So true Julie. Manners is a good thing. I was recently thinking that next time I go to Chapters, I'm going to pick up a book on etiquette. Sometimes I feel like our culture is lacking in this area. Badly.
Having said that, I've seen people be icy and say the right words . .with attitude written all over them. It's a whole package deal. I'm sure if I had a little mirrow in my purse, I'd be plenty guilty of this too.
Good reminder.

Thoughts on Life and Millinery. said...

I'm like you, I'd rather lived in a house at the end of a lane where it is private than have a house with a view,where people could see me and what I do. You are so right, we Christians have signed on for a place on the hill whether we knew it at the time or not. It makes me want to make sure that the very finest is on view at all times. I'm so proud of you and your blog, it is like a house built on a hill. Keep up the good work.

Demara said...

Thank-you Julie!! I will remember this. It reminds me of Col 3:23 too.