I was talking to a friend today and asked her if someone she knew was a Christian. Her response was that the person "was one of those people who its really hard to tell."
A comment like that should make us think: "Would I be described like that?" Maybe not by someone at my church or by one of my close friends. But what if you asked the lady who checks me out at the grocery store, or the other moms at my kids' afterschool activities? What if you asked the waiter at the restaurant who served me, or even my next-door neighbor?
Would those people who only see me for a few minutes, as I'm going through my daily routine, say "Absolutely, that girl's a Christian! She oozes Jesus." Or would they be more likely to say, "Well, its hard to tell. She seemed nice, but then she rolled her eyes and looked exasperated when she had to wait a few extra minutes in line." Or, "She always smiles and says hello, but she never mentions her faith, so I don't really know." Or, "I'm not sure. She seemed so rushed and busy that she didn't even really interact with me."
It reminds me of something I heard a long time ago, probably by some speaker or bible study leader or in a book along the way: "If you were accused of being a Christian, would there be enough evidence to convict you?"
If Jesus has changed us, then we should LOOK DIFFERENT to the world around us. Our attitudes, words, responses, facial expressions, interests, and lifestyles should be obviously like Christ's. There should be EVIDENCE in our conversations and in our priorities and in our bank statements that we are followers of Christ.
I'm currently reading an excellent book called Follow Me by David Platt. In chapter 8 he states that in the 1st century, "Christians were not known for association with Christ and his church; instead, they were known for complete abandonment to Christ and his cause."
Am I so completely abandoned to Christ and His cause that everyone around me knows without a doubt that I'm a follower of Him? Or is it "really hard to tell"?