Good Words… Without the Gospel
by Sheri Rose Shepherd
You are the light of the world–like a city on a mountain, glowing in the night for all to see. Don’t hide your light under a basket! Instead, put it on a stand and let it shine for all.
Have you ever had a good idea to help someone or do something good and although it felt great in the moment, it did not bring real, everlasting change? Or, have you ever wanted to share your faith but felt like a failure at representing Christ?
The first invitation I received to speak publicly about my faith came from an unlikely person. She was a woman who I felt had humiliated me at the dinner table in front of my husband’s Bible professors. There I was, already intimidated by the educated people at this event, due to my learning disorder and lack of education, when a woman, who was highly educated, said to me in a loud voice, “I heard you used to be fat, Jewish, and on drugs. How did you ever become a Christian?
Of course all eyes were suddenly on me. At this point I felt forced to share my humiliating life story in front of a table of “perfect in every way” strangers. I am not proud of my life before Christ, and every word felt like a fight as I struggled to explain my sin and salvation experience. When they finally stopped asking questions, I excused myself to go to the bathroom, and there I begged God to never let that happen again. That night as I crawled into to bed, I played back my personal battles of regret, guilt, and shame. I did not feel worthy of sharing my faith. I wanted to hide my past and pretend it never happened. I know I am not the only person who struggles with feeling unworthy for God to use me to further His Kingdom on earth and who fights these inward battles of wanting to do something great for God.
It has been over twenty two years since that humiliating moment, but when I look back, I now realize that that was the moment God used to birth my speaking and writing ministry. That very woman who embarrassed me at dinner later invited me to share my story in front of that entire group of Christian leaders. Those leaders invited me to share my story with their women’s groups, and I have been invited to speak and write books ever since.
I did not ever dream I would be in ministry. But God has a strange way of calling each of us. Paul was blinded in order to see His true calling, and there is a Paul inside each of us. What I mean by that is that our heart screams to live a life of adventure and make a difference while we are here. That life is found in fighting our fears and stepping out and witnessing even if we feel worthless. You don’t have to have a lot of faith to do great things in God’s Kingdom. Just a little faith and a sweet surrender to God’s prompting can help you find the passion and power to speak up and share the message of love, hope and salvation found in Christ alone. He is waiting to speak through you today all you have to do is share what He means to you!
God’s Letter to You
I believe if The Lord was going to write you a personal letter about battles this life brings it may read like this….
BE MY LIGHT TO THE WORLD TODAY!
I stepped into your darkness so you would shine for Me. Did you know that I have empowered you to light up the lives of everyone around you? You are My light to the world. Walk with Me, and let Me illuminate your life today with My love and My power. Look to Me, and I will make you the bright spot in someone’s darkness today. Don’t hide your light beneath your uncertainties and insecurities. Spend more time with Me and I will make you glow with a godliness that’s irresistible. If you will let Me, I’ll make you shine in such a way that you will be My star that points to heaven and brings hope to the hurting.
Your King and True Light of the world