Ability, Disability, Availability, Liability
For most of my career life, I have been cocooned in a Christian environment. It is a safe place for the most part. In fact, I tried my best to make a classroom environment that enriched the lives of my students not just with academics, but also Christian ethics laced with challenging students to live their lives with eternity in view. Once I retired, I ventured into the retail environment and there found connections with other Christian people. It is almost like a radar system that puts out signals and attracts other Believers. The Apostle Paul describes it in Romans 8 as our spirit seeking out similar spirits as a witness.
In the past few months I have met other Christians at the Active Adult Center where I joined for an exercise class and found myself immediately attracted to people of like faith. It is amazing. While we are certainly friendly with other people, we usually find ourselves sitting at the same table for lunch or coffee.
The Active Adult Center (most people would call it a Senior Center) is a place where people of moral standards seem to gather. Yet, by no means are all members believing Christians. It is a place to let my light shine. Sadly, some of those moral standards are also a set of rules, a system of good deeds by which some of those folks hope to earn a place in Heaven.
This morning I read a most interesting passage in I Peter 4. Verse 11 is one of those verses that can stay with a person so it has been my muse today. It says in part, “. . . if any man minister, let him do it as of the ability which God giveth. . .” The words, the ability which God giveth has tugged at my heart. What are those abilities? May I venture to say, the ability to be sweet rather than sour; the ability to be available rather than self-absorbed; the ability to cook a meal for someone just because you think they need the help; the ability to be a good neighbor; and on and on.
When I walk in the Shepherd’s presence, those times of ministry appear before me. It doesn’t take much ability to pack a food request list at the food pantry, but it does take availability. Every Friday, from noon to three I pack up food requests. I work with people of interesting faith. It is a place to let my light shine.
So, what about you, dear Reader? Let the Holy Spirit nudge you into a place to smile, encourage, and bring glory to God through Jesus Christ. That’s what the rest of verse 11 tells us to do. BE a person of Christlikeness and HE will show you how to walk in the light so you can shine for Him. I beseech you, do not be a liability for the cause of Christ.