Friday, March 06, 2009

Out of the Salt Shaker and into the World

Rebacca Manley Pippert's book, Out of the Salt Shaker and into the World was one of the books recommended at our church's mission conference last month. In this book Mrs. Pippert shares anecdotes and practical wisdom regarding evangelism as a part of one's day-to-day life. I found her advice for Christians to truly live what we believe - that is, to pursue holiness - refreshing.

This in particular spoke to me:

"There are other ways that God's holy presence in us can be expressed to the world. One of the greatest differences about Christians is that we know we are sinners. Therefore, we have the freedom to admit our sins and weaknesses. We are also free to share how God is helping us overcome our temptations.

'Our honesty with seekers about our struggles does several things. First, it punctures the stereotype that Christians think they are perfect. We don't excuse sin by rationalizing it. Indeed, it's because we take sin so seriously that we try to develop a realistic understanding of who we are, warts and all. Our self-honesty, however, leads us to hope, because we see that God is changing us, not overnight and not without setbacks, but slowly and surely.

'Our honesty before others also shatters the stereotype that all Christians are judgmental and critical people. By sharing our weaknesses, we acknowledge that we not only understand the human condition but we too must overcome it! We are not "finished products," yet we rejoice that by God's grace we are being strengthened to change. Owning our sins and temptations can actually lead seekers to experience conviction for their sins."

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