Salt and Light
Recently, I was with a large group of people for several days. Some of them profess to be Christians, but the large majority was neutral. As I tried to navigate this group, something was clear to me early on- I didn’t act like they did. Even the professing Christians in our group didn’t appear any different than anyone else. There was heavy drinking, rude and inappropriate comments, and lots of offensive language. By everyone! It was discouraging as I tried to maintain my testimony amid this group. In Matthew 5:13, Jesus says “You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot.” In ancient times, salt had many purposes. It was to add flavor (that special something that you want more of), stop decay (like the decay of sin), it makes you thirsty (as in thirsty for Christ!), it was white (representing purity). It is unclear from the passage which of these Jesus is implying, but since salt is used in all these ways, I can assume He meant all of them. It is clear that we are to fill the role that salt did in the ancient times. Without salt, food isn’t as tasty. We are supposed to add that “spice” to our lives that unbelievers will sample and not want to do without. Without refrigeration, salt would preserve the meat. This was extremely important so they didn’t get sick. Sin makes us sick – if Christians don’t show the way through their “salt”, then we are worthless! Too much salt makes us crave water. When you have a lot of Jesus, you crave MORE! The color of salt is white – which represents our purity. What happens when salt gets contaminated? It’s no good, it can’t be used for it’s intended purpose. Jesus tells us to throwing into the road. If we are professing Christians, our actions and behavior should be different than those around us. Do people notice that you are different? I sure stood out among this group. That’s a good thing. Jesus also calls us to be His light. In Matthew 5:14, He declares, “You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden.” We are to shine the light of Jesus. It should be noticeable in dark places! Our actions ARE our light. What we do, or what we don’t do, should be different than the world, the dark places. I noticed as the week went on, the people who were using foul language started avoiding me, or apologized when they would cuss in front of me. They knew I didn’t talk that way, and it started to become obvious to THEM what they were saying. It’s our responsibility to be His “salt” and “light”. Are you a lighthouse in the darkness around us? Do people know you love Jesus, and go out of their way not to “offend” you? If so, good job. If we act just like the world, how will they know the difference in a Christian and everyone else? Although it’s tough to not always be included, by living differently you are showing His way through the dark. It’s my prayer those folks will come to me in a crisis, or if they need prayer – because even though they are not in the right place, they have seen the light shining through me – the light of Jesus. Like a moth to a flashlight, it will call people to Him. Allow yourself to be used to honor the King.