I'm a Camp Friend at FC. For those of you who aren't familiar with that position, basically my job (along with about 25 other students) is to hop in a van with 5 other people and travel the country for 8 weeks, making stops at various summer camps and representing Florida College to talk about it and inspire interest in it. It's the perfect job for me because I love FC. I could talk about it all the time. Actually, I do talk about it all the time. In one of our (many) trainings this spring, our boss gave us the reminder that we are representing FC all the time, whether we are in the van, eating at a restaurant, staying in someone's home, or working at a camp. Our job is to be careful about details and being examples of FC's mission every second we are on tour. And honestly, that doesn't sound very hard to me. I'm not that kid who hates rules at FC or has trouble abiding by them. My biggest problem will probably be putting my ipod away and being awake enough to hold useful conversations.
But here's the thing. Isn't my job as a Christian to be an example of Christ's mission every second I'm on earth? The thing I want you to think about today (and the thing I need to think about today) is that we limit our sphere of influence and our "mission field" every day. If you're like me, you pray fervently for opportunities to share the Gospel and spread the Good News. But if you're like me, you forget that the person behind you in line at Starbucks, the person who's purchase you're ringing up at work, your little brother, your Mom, the people watching you interact at a restaurant, your suitemate, the girl down the hall, the waiter at the restaurant, your non-Christian friend's family, the people at the gas station...those people are your field. Those people are my opportunities. I go through every day waiting for someone to walk up to me and say "can we have a Bible study?" Or I try to start a close relationship with someone in hopes that in a few months or years I can bring God up to him. Who am I kidding?! I don't have months or years. People need the Lord. Today. Now. At the gas station, at the bookstore, at Starbucks. . . .I may not be able to say "Hi, my name is Emma, can I talk to you about Jesus?" But I may be able to buy someone's drink and show her generosity. Or say "blessed" instead of "good" when someone asks how I am. Or start going to that restaurant and asking for that waitress and leaving a note for her or offer to pick her up for services sometime. Don't limit your field. Don't judge the soil, just throw the seed. I'm the queen of sitting back and waiting for a mindblowing Gospel opportunity to come. It's like I'm waiting for a vision that Cornelius needs me to come tell him about my beliefs. But I honestly doubt that is going to happen anytime soon. If you're praying for open doors, have the sight to see the open doors. Philip walked up to someone in a chariot and offered to help him read the Bible. What have you done to represent Christ today? Just like I'm representing FC 24/7 this summer in my Camp Friends job, we're representing Christ 24/7 while we're on earth. EVERY MINUTE. This isn't even a call to cut sin out of your life, I think that's a given for those of us who are Christians. This is a call to act out love, act out generosity, act out good will, act out zeal for the Gospel. Because even in those instants where we aren't thinking about anything except being late for work, getting ahead of the next car in traffic, or cutting down the waiting line at the bookstore, we're given opportunities to be lights. Today, remember Who you're representing. Today, open your eyes to see the field.
Trust me, I'm the worst about letting a day go by and not even thinking about the people I'm giving a bad attitude to (sorry, Mom and Emma and Jesse....) or not sacrificing my time and money to serve. But today I want to change that and start the growth process so that by next week, someone I don't know well has seen that I love him/her, and more importantly that God does.
"If I say, "I will not mention him, or speak any more in his name," there is in my heart as it were a burning fire shut up in my bones, and I am weary with holding it in, and I cannot." --Jer. 20:9
"For if you keep silent at this time, relief and deliverance will rise for the Jews from another place....And who knows whether you have not come to the kingdom for such a time as this?” --Esther 4:14
"Do you not say, ‘There are yet four months, then comes the harvest’? Look, I tell you, lift up your eyes, and see that the fields are white for harvest." -- John 4:35
Lord, help me to love people. Really love people. Be my vision so that I can look through my faulty, selfish human eyes and see souls around me crying out for Your love, and not just focus on how precious my time and my reputation are. I don't deserve to know You and to have You know me so well. But I'm grateful that I have the chance to show Your glory on this earth in some small way to the people I meet. Help me to constantly remind myself of You, and help me to show Your peace to others, "and may they forget the channel," seeing only You.
Praying for you today, pray for me too.