My thinking was myopic and faulty. I had fallen short. While it was true, I represented my church and the desire to represent well was a good objective, it was secondary to my ambassadorship of Christ Jesus. As a believer and follower of Christ, I am sent out as ambassador to represent the one who sent me and to demonstrate His character in the manner by which I live and speak. As Christians we are called to represent Christ in words and actions. Acts 1:8, 2 Cor. 5:20
As I was making a reservation for a women’s retreat I determined, as a representative of my local church, to be especially kind, polite and patient. I had resolved to live out Colossians 4:5-6, Walk in wisdom toward outsiders, making the best use of time. Let your speech always be seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer each person.
As it turned out, there was a bit of confusion on the part of the hotel representative as to who we were and there appeared to be no block of rooms available for our group. A short phone call became long, filled with questions and long pauses of being on hold.
When the confusion was eventually cleared up, the hotel representative thanked me for my kindness. As I hung up the phone my heart swelled with gratitude for the grace to represent my church well by exercising patience and kindness. That momentary sense of victory turned to piercing conviction and joy turned to sorrow. I had fallen short of the mark.
Though I had set my mind to represent the church well, the object of my representation was wrong. My goal is not to make my church look good. It’s to showcase my Lord to the praise of His glory. How quickly and easily I forget that while we live out our lives before human-kind, we live for the good name above all names, Jesus Christ and for His glory.
Matthew 5:16 In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and glorify God in heaven.
Psalm 115:1 Not to us, O Lord, not to us, but to your name give glory, for the sake of your steadfast love and faithfulness!
When I remember my role as ambassador to Christ, the good name of Jesus will be showcased in all my associations; my family, my marriage, my job and my church. Before and above all else, I represent Jesus and endeavor to live in such a way that His name be made famous.
Psalm 45:17 I will cause Your name to be remembered to all generations; therefore nations will praise you forever and ever.
Above and before all else, I represent Jesus.
Should not my every encounter be an opportunity of mindful representation?