An interesting conversation happened years ago between me and my new neighbor. We had recently moved in to the neighborhood. In our first conversation we discovered that we were both Christians. When she found out that I was she said, “The first time I saw you, you were walking across the yard. And I could tell you were a Christian.” I looked at her inquisitively and she said, “I know it sounds strange but that’s what came to me… she’s a Christian.” She said that that had never happened to her before. She continued, “I just knew you were.” I found that to be a great encouragement.
In the last month something similar happened to me. It happened in two different conversations… with two different women. And they were two weeks apart from each other. I was in different events with each one… and these events were not Christian themed. In our conversations I found out that they were Christians and I then told them that I was a Christian as well. They both told me that they could tell I was a Christian… each saying something like, “I knew you were!” Or “I could tell you were!” Again, I took it as great encouragement.
Then a few weeks later, a little one in our family was struggling with his attitude. In the moment he wanted to act badly and not follow after the Spirit of God. We discussed the importance of listening to God. We discussed how Christ said that we’ll know people by their fruit, and what it looks like to follow God.
I told him about all three of those incidents and how it proves Christ’s words. I don’t know what I did or said or how I acted before these three people. What I do know is what they said to me. And this has happened three different times in my life… people knowing that I’m a Christian before we meet. He said he wanted to be known like that too. I said to him, “You need to always strive to follow after God seeking him.” We prayed and he followed after God in that moment. His attitude changed because his heart changed.
Later as I was driving, I passed a bag of trash on the side of the road. I thought, you know when we pass a bag of trash on the side of the road we never question what it is. We see a bag of trash and immediately know it’s a bag of trash. We never question. All we wonder about is the truck from which it fell. We know what we see. It is a bag of trash. Then I thought, It’s the same with us. We are known by our fruit!
In that light… it shouldn’t surprise us when we can tell a person is a Christian. Their true nature is shining through them! It’s easy to pick up on those who do not follow Christ. I submit it should be just as easy to pick up on someone who does follow Christ. I pray the next time you pass a bag of trash on the road, that you will be reminded of these things. And that you’ll wonder what people see when they see you.
Good things to read: Matthew 7 about knowing by their fruit and John 15 which is about abiding in Christ. This is something to ponder in our hearts on this Hump-Day Wednesday. Ponder it before the Lord, with his Word and in prayer. He will guide you into all truth.
Remember that Friday is always acomin’. Most importantly, Christ is coming back too.