“15 I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other! 16 So, because you are lukewarm—neither hot nor cold—I am about to spit you out of my mouth. 17 You say, ‘I am rich; I have acquired wealth and do not need a thing.’ But you do not realize that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind and naked.” Revelation 3:15-17
I think many of us can appreciate this statement. Who likes a lukewarm soda or, dare I say it, beer? How many of us enjoy listening to noncommittal love songs, “I love you, at least right now,” or as the Flight of the Conchords state, “You’re the most beautiful girl in the…. room, the whole wide room.” How many of us would be flattered by these statements? I hope the answer is no one, yet so often this is the lukewarm life we live.
This fact slapped me in the face today while at the gym. I saw a guy named Lawrence. Lawrence for the past few months has been in a wheelchair with a big brace, now a smaller brace. He is a wonderful guy, always joyful and upbeat, always saying hello and starting conversations. I try to talk to Lawrence whenever I see him. Last week I said, “Hey man, looks like you’re healing up great; how are you?” Lawrence replied, “Blessed brother. God is good.” The conversation went on, and he continually kept it on God and His goodness. He even threw in a few “hallelujah’s.” So what’s wrong with that? Sounds good, right? The problem was my reaction. I was uncomfortable with the amount of faith he was showing in public. I love Jesus, but it is difficult for me to be that bold. Not because I don’t want to, but because I fear the reaction I will receive. I left that conversation thanking God for Lawrence and saying, “Lord, let me be more like Him, unashamed and joyful.” As I was riding to work today thinking about this circumstance, it brought this scripture to mind:
If anyone is ashamed of me and my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, the Son of Man will be ashamed of him when he comes in his Father’s glory with the holy angels.” Mark 8:38
Would I say that I am ashamed of Christ, His words, His teaching? Never! However, do my actions show it? Does my recoil at such blatant Christian language in a public place show it? Sadly…yes.
Many of us have become so respectful and accommodating of other people’s beliefs that we are unwilling to share ours. After all, we don’t want to be rude or make people feel uncomfortable. So we live our lives with our hidden faith. Meanwhile, people are dying apart from Christ and going to Hell. Is it truly respectful and loving to keep your faith to yourself if you are sentencing all those you know to Hell? That was a rhetorical question. Why then do so many of us live in this place? Christ would say:
“14 “You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. 15 Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house.” Matthew 5:14-15
Shouldn’t we as believers be so transformed (2 Corinthians 5:17) that His spirit exudes from us? Again, that was rhetorical. It’s time to stop living a hidden faith. Let’s stop singing noncommittal love songs to God with our lives. It’s time to let the transformation that the Spirit is doing and will do in our lives change the way we live, the way we speak, and the way we serve.