How many times have you been reminded of the importance of the way you live “because the world is watching”? Many times I have acknowledged the importance of this in my own heart. But if we’re not careful we can become more interested in how our behavior appears to others than how our heart is before the Lord. While I in no way diminish the importance of living in such a way as to not bring dishonor to the name of Christ, I would propose that there are two ways of doing this.
The first way is by way of the nice person syndrome. It is a fabricated façade placed before the watching eyes of others, that conforms to the proper etiquette of the day so as not to offend anyone. It does not reflect anything of what is going on in the heart, but is purposely designed to be what is expected from others. This life is dominated by a desire to please others, to have their approval and to know that they think well of us. We present to people a self that is not us at all.
The second way is the overflow life. It is effortless in that there is no need for pretense. Regardless of what people expect or what society demands, we are living before an audience of One and our desire is only to please Him. We are glad when in the process of living for Him we are also able to please others as well. But the overflow life makes no allowances for putting the desires of any man above the desires of Christ. We live an authentic life, with our words and deeds motivated only by our longing to bring glory to Christ.
Those who live the overflow life, who are living before an audience of One, will be misunderstood. This is a certainty. The world will not appreciate our devotion to One other than themselves. But we were not called to be appreciated. We were called to follow and obey, which is something that the world cannot understand. Let the world watch, and let them marvel.
My dear Jesus, the world may be a curious onlooker, but I am living for Your eyes only.
Well said. I can’t add to this, but would like to give you kudos for putting it so well. This is how we are to “be the light” so that our goods works can shine before others.