What does it mean to be a Christian? Different Christians would undoubtedly give different answers, based upon the greatest impact Christianity has had on their lives. Some would emphasize salvation. Some would highlight forgiveness, the forgiveness of their sins, the guilt of their sins lifted from their shoulders. Others would emphasize the peace that comes to the Christian who understands that he is “in Christ” and on his way to Heaven. Similarly, still others would focus on having gained a fuller meaning to their lives. Each of these answers would be correct, and all of them together would be correct as well.
There are folks who would like to have a sanitized church made up primarily of people pretty much like them. People of a similar professional, social, economic, educational and ethnic background. They don’t like the idea of being around people with a really wicked past, so they’re certainly not going to personally reach out to such people with the gospel.
It’s a common practice for someone to comment upon something that he perceives needs to be done, with the unspoken understanding that someone else should actually do it. A wife will mention to her husband how their gutters need to be cleaned out, or the trim on their house needs to be painted, or their windows need to be washed, or their kids’ bedroom needs to be painted, or their garage needs to be cleaned out, or their lawn needs to be weeded, etc., etc., etc. I don’t think it’s a sign of paranoia to say that a husband usually understands such comments to mean that, for the most part, his wife wants him to tend to those chores.
As a parent, when I look at my children, what do I see? Do I just see young children? Do I see my young children? Do I see some of the most special blessings the Lord could possibly give me in the persons of my young children? Do I see my young children, created in God’s blessed image and entrusted to my care by God Himself to be prepared for His eternal kingdom? What I see when I look at my children will determine the basic direction I will take and just what I will emphasize in their rearing and training.
Gary L. Hutchens