Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "The Beautiful Garden Of Prayer"1 (Lyrics)
Matthew 5:16 – In the same way, let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father. (NLT)
She'd been in the closet for five years. Now she was coming out.
Collecting old picture frames with photos of unknown dead people is a hobby that my wife doesn't particularly appreciate. She does love the old frames with the ornate handiwork and will gladly replace the dead person with a modern piece of art.
This particular closet dweller hung on my office wall for three years, eyes following everyone who looked at her, regardless of where they stood. Then, we moved to our current residence, and my wife said, "No dead people hanging on our walls — except in your office." But my dead girl with the roving eyes wasn't even allowed there. I convinced my wife not to sell her. Instead, she stuck her in a closet.
One day when I came home from work, I found my girl leaning against a bookshelf. My wife had cleaned the closet in my study.
"Why is my dead girl picture out of the closet?" I asked.
"I have a place on the wall you can hang her." And she did. Now as I walk in every morning, her wandering eyes greet me. I'm glad that she got to come out of the closet.
Jesus doesn't like closet dwellers either. He wants our lights — our good deeds — to shine brightly before others. Shielding a light or putting it under a cover only dims the light or extinguishes it altogether.
My testimony of what Christ has done in my life is the light that I have as a believer, as well as how I act out daily the difference that He has made. I don't have to preach a sermon to tell others what He has done. Because of the snippet-world that technology has created, I need to shorten my testimony to the bare essentials so that I can share it in a minute or two.
But what I say isn't nearly as important as what others see. Words mean little without actions to back them. God gives me numerous opportunities to act out my faith in practical ways. I'll see those openings if I ask Him to give me a gentle nudge when He sends them my way.
Let's not hide our faith. Let's come out of the closet.
Prayer: Father, give us the courage to live our faith before others so that they will be pointed to You. Amen.