We are all role models.
“Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.” Matt. 5:16 NKJV
People all around us listen to what we say and then watch what we do, watch how we react to things, watch how we treat others, pay attention to how we feel. When people look at a Christian and say, “I want what they have,” that comes from showing through our attitudes and actions something desirable: joy and peace despite our struggles and trials, love in the face of those who hurt us, and blessings in the middle of all seeming lost.
Once my grandfather worked with a man who asked him every single Friday to go out to drinks with him, and my grandfather always answered no, he didn’t do that or drink alcohol. One day, he asked the man why he always asked, knowing the answer already. The man told him it was because he wanted the assurance that somebody would stick to their convictions and do what they said they would.
“But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.” James 1:22 NKJV
It made an impression on me once when my coworker looked at my chronic health issues and told me, he saw the great care I took with my diet and thought that it was not helping me, and so it wasn’t a path he wanted to follow. I had to think about that and told him that if I ate any other way, the situation would be worse, that I’m still working despite my chronic health issues, I’m still going.
And that’s why it’s not only the things you do that matter, but also your attitude. If all they see in us is misery, then why would they want what we have? We are all role models, beacons of light if we will let God shine through us, if we walk in His peace that surpasses understanding and remember always to rejoice that He sustains us.
“And He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.” II Cor. 12:9 NKJV
James 2:14, 20; Philippians 4:7; Matthew 5:44; Nehemiah 8:10