For the longest time, a popular carbonated beverage had as its tag line, “the real thing.” Maybe you have asked or been asked, “Are you for real?” Sometimes we ask this out of fatigue. We are not sure about what we are seeing. We know we are tired, so we are searching for confirmation. Other times, we might ask because it’s hard to believe the fantastic claims of the individual, claims that revolve around the ability to supply something or complete some amazing feat. John the Baptist and Jesus were involved in just such an exchange.
Matthew 11:2-6 says, “And when John had heard in prison about the works of Christ, he sent two of his disciples and said to Him, “Are You the Coming One, or do we look for another?” Jesus answered and said to them, “Go and tell John the things which you hear and see: The blind see and the lame walk; the lepers are cleansed and the deaf hear; the dead are raised up and the poor have the gospel preached to them. And blessed is he who is not offended because of Me.”
Remember, this is the same Jesus that John himself baptized and yet he needed Christ to confirm His credentials. Jesus doesn’t condemn John nor his disciples when asked for confirmation. Jesus isn’t threatened by honest questions asked in sincerity. So, to the contrary, He responds by listing the results of His ministry. He lists the blind, the lame, the leprous, the deaf, the dead and the general proclamation of salvation to the lost! Jesus wasn’t living as some shadow or some silhouette. He was the real deal! So, as Christians, if we are to be like Jesus, we need to understand how to be REAL:
R: Results. Does your life produce results? Does your life produce fruit? The Bible is quite clear that people will identify us by our love and by our fruits. Are your actions and reactions producing results, not only in your life, but in the lives of others?
E: Every moment. Christians are Christians all the time; not merely when it’s easy. One of the three primary laws of logic is the Law of Identity. It basically states that once something is identified, it is what it is, through and through, while being uniquely different from something else. The Bible says it this way, “…how can a spring produce both bitter and sweet water?” How can we be real now and not real at some other time? We ought to live rightly ALL the time.
A: Ask. In order to be real, one doesn’t have to do it alone. I hate to break it to you, but God is frankly not impressed by your feats of strength and endurance. He gives no quarters to the Lone Rangers out there. If you want help being real, then ask Him. Grace is ability. The Bible tells us that “…God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble (James 4:6).”
L: Live it! In research, one often works for a good bit of time in the realm of the theoretical. For a nerd like myself, this is an amazing place of thought, discussion, pondering and reflection. Often, many use the Bible as a book of theories; they don’t really believe it will work. Or maybe they believe it is for others to fulfill. The Bible is not a list of fables and myths. It is not some Greek tragedy. Instead, the Bible was written in a way that you can practically, literally apply it to life. James 1:22 reminds us, “Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.”
The dictionary defines a silhouette as “the shape and outline of someone or something visible against a lighter background, especially in dim light.” I think this perfectly describes the life of a Christian. We are the shape of someone, not ourselves, but Christ. Further, we are to be seen in this world full of dim light. Cornerstone Christian Schools is a school for real families, with real kids, who desire to make a real impact in this world. Don’t merely be a shadowy image. Be the REAL thing. Don’t live like a silhouette. I suggest living like a WARRIOR!