Wouldn’t this be a great time to let others see Jesus in your life? Especially at this time of year when so many people struggle with wanting to see just a glimmer of hope? We say “Jesus is the reason for the season.” Well, what if you and I made it a point to let others see Jesus in us?
You and I can be a light to others who don’t know Jesus or just need to get a glimpse of Him. We can do that by being very different from the rest of this world and standing apart in a way that draws their eyes to Emmanuel — God with us — the God who lives within us.
Here are three simple ways you can let others see Christ in your life this Christmas season:
1. Love the unlovely.
It’s easy to love someone who loves you in return. It’s also easy to love the attractive, accomplished, and affluent people. But what about the ragged-looking man or woman sitting on the street corner asking you for some spare change? It’s a whole different story to love someone who doesn’t deserve your love or look the part or treat you well. Yet that’s what Jesus did and He instructed His followers to do the same.
“Jesus said ‘My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you’” (John 15:12). How did Jesus love them? Scripture answers that in Romans 5:8: “While we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8).
Those without Christ only know conditional love, selfish love, erotic love. But when you show an unworldly love – a love that is sacrificial and without limits, preferences, or condition – others can’t help but see Jesus in you. There are lots of undesirable-looking people this time of year. There are lots of needs. Treat them, and speak to them, as you would someone you love. It may be the only time they see and hear Jesus this Christmas season.
2. Display joy.
Jesus said “I came that they may have life and have it abundantly,” (John 10:10). That is joy, my friends. He also said when we obey Him and remain in His love, His joy will be in us and our joy will be complete (John 15:10-11). How can we know the God of this Universe – and experience His freedom and forgiveness – and not be filled with joy?
Yes, life is hard. Just this month — when we could least afford it — we had two major car repairs and a number of other unexpected circumstances. But as I chose to display joy, rather than a complaining spirit, God’s peace filled my heart and reminded me of what matters most in life. A hefty car repair is nothing compared to the loss of a home, the loss of my health, or the loss of a loved one. Joy is not about our circumstances which can change from day to day. Joy is about our condition– of being forgiven and free in Christ – which will never change. Be a person who is joyful regardless of your circumstances, and others will see Christ in you.
3. Be holy, not hurried.
First Peter 1:15-16 instructs: “But just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do; for it is written: ‘Be holy, because I am holy.’” At first glance, you and I think I can’t possibly be holy. But holiness means to be set apart because of our purity and righteousness that comes not from ourselves, but from Christ’s spirit in us.
Jesus was holy (fully obedient to His Father), set apart, so very different from the world. And we can be set apart, too, by slowing down long enough to hear God’s voice, notice people around us, say a kind word. Concentrate on being holy, rather than hurried and harried this time of year and you, too, will certainly stand apart. While the world is constantly pushing us to “Hurry up,” “Get it done. Faster!” and “Don’t wait, do it now” Scripture quietly beckons us to “Be still….” (Psalm 46:10) and “Wait for the Lord” (Psalm 27:14). Take time for God and others and people will see Christ in you this season.
What can YOU do to let others see Christ in you this Christmas season? I would love to hear your ideas in the comment section below.