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Sunday, April 23, 2017 other day's devotionals

Today's Devotional Reading
Show and Tell

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Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone. Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: show me thy faith without thy works, and I will show thee my faith by my works (James 2:17-18).

Show and Tell. Those very words bring to mind visions of grade school and memories of our childhood when we would take something to school with us that we wanted everyone else to see. We could not wait to stand up and show everyone what we had and then to talk about it--explaining where we got it, how long we had it and what we did with it. It was something fun to share because it was something we liked, and it was something we perhaps thought that others, when they saw it, would wish that they had it too.
In Christ, we are the little children of God. We have a prized possession in what we have in Him. It should be as such that we cannot wait to stand up and show everyone what we have and talk about it--explaining where we got it, how long we have had it and what we do with it. What we have in Christ should be something fun for us to share because of the joy we have in it, and because we believe that when others see it, they will hope to have it too.
Imagine the look on the faces of those within your grade-school class if you were to have stood up, holding out your hands as though you had something in them, and then begin telling them about it. They would have had to take your word for it, because even though you were describing to them what you supposedly possessed, they would not be able to see any evidence of it. Or how about if you were to stand up with a bowling ball in your hands, and begin to describe a tennis racket to the class. The words "show and tell" take on a whole new meaning when there is nothing to show, or when what you are describing looks nothing like what you hold.
The world today simply needs to see evidence of the Christ we claim to possess. We live in a time when words are many. And unless what we say somehow spurs the interest of someone they will probably not listen for very long. People today have developed, and are developing further, a very selective hearing--ready to "change the channel" if they don't agree or have simply "heard it all before." Words are many, credentials seem lacking, and people simply do not believe much of what they hear anymore.
As such, our evangelical efforts are going to require much more that two-minute testimonies, and witnessing classes designed to equip individuals with well rehearsed scripts to be taken to the world in a "door to door salesman" fashion. In the midst of many words, it has become like sorting through the mail--we first sort out the junk mail and throw it away--paying little attention to that which does not interest us. Even the junk mail is often designed with attractive, eye catching print in hope that a person will look further. Only to be a disappointment to any who stop long enough to look inside, and find that what looked good on the outside has nothing of value to offer on the inside. So are the polished words of a witness who dutifully tells others about a Christ that they claim has changed their lives--when there is so little evidence to support it.
We can go on telling people how they must tell the good news, but if we do not emphasize a lifestyle that shows evidence of Christ, then we send our witnesses out to testify of what they have not seen. Witnessing is necessary, yet it must come from a soul who is being transformed by the power of God. For if the root is good, the whole tree will flourish. And words will no longer be the means by which others discover what you believe--instead, your words will be the confirmation of what others have suspected.

A good man out of the good treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is evil: for of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaketh (Luke 6:45 ).

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