Monday, June 11, 2007


by Keith A. Giles

This week at The Mission, our weekly house church, one of the children chose a verse to share with the group. It was Matthew 5:13-16 where Jesus declares that we, His followers, are the Salt of the Earth and the Light of the World.

The discussion that followed revealed that God simply wants us to be who we are and what we are, no more and no less. Jesus makes the point that salt is for being salty, if it doesn't do that it is worthless. He explains how light is meant to be seen in the darkness and if you light the candle and then hide it, what good is it?

Our discussion touched on the futility of attempting to be something other than what we are. Sometimes we think that to be a good witness for Jesus we have to be the most Holy and Perfect person in the room. We have to smile as much as possible. We have to wear a mask of holiness and be careful not to let anyone see weakness or doubt or failure in our lives.

I can remember once when my Dad came home from work and told me that, after months of trying to be a witness in his workplace he had discovered something unexpected. When he was doing his best to appear "Godly" in front of his co-workers, they kept him at arms length and avoided him. That day he had been in a conversation with a co-worker who was not a Believer and he had accidentally cursed out loud in his frustration. His co-worker sat back and stared at my Father in shock and disbelief. Then my Dad hung his head and apologized for his coarse language, admitting that he struggled sometimes in this area. His friend leaned forward and began to ask him about his faith. He wanted to know where my Dad attended church. Over the next few weeks this man would come around and ask my Dad questions about the Bible.

What had happened? My Father had simply let his mask fall to the ground. He had confessed to his friend that he was a sinner and that he needed the Gospel himself.

Jesus called us Salt and Light. It only takes a small flicker of light to push back an ocean of darkness. It only takes a few grains of salt to season a steak. Too much light only blinds those who are searching. Too much salt ruins the most succulent of meals.

I found myself wondering how wonderful it would be if Christians around the Nation would begin to take down their masks and just be who they are in front of their co-workers and neighbors. Instead of pointing our fingers and saying, "You! Sinner! You need to repent and receive the Gospel!" maybe we should be saying, "I am the wretched sinner who needs the Gospel. Here are the ways I would be hopeless without Jesus". Maybe then people could see our small, flickering light? Maybe then they might taste the small grains of salt upon their tongues?

I think it's worth a try. Don't you?

THIS IS WHO WE ARE: Want to know what all the House Church fuss is about? I've posted a very cool video over at the Mission House Church page for everyone to check out. It's a wonderful snapshot of what the Holy Spirit is doing in the lives of people, one house at a time. Here ya go:

SICK OF THE HYPE? [Subversive Underground] Presents "Non-Con '08" - A Conference for People Who Never Want To Attend Another Conference Again. Featuring Jackie Pullinger, David Ruis, me and you and 96 other people in a room together. A time to serve the poor together, to eat together, to listen to each other, and to practice being the Church. Only 100 seats available. March of 2008 here in Orange County, California. A little more info here:
TO REPLY TO ME DO NOT REPLY TO THIS EMAIL. IT'S AN AUTOMATED SERVICE AND I WILL NOT SEE IT! Instead hit me up at "Elysiansky" (at) "hotmail" (dot) "com".

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Soliton Sessions in Ventura, California
August 9-12th
Conversation: "Dangerous Living"
Guides: Kester Brewin (UK), Pete Rollins (N IRE), Christine Pohl (US), Ched Myers (US), Barry Taylor (US/UK)and many others, including you!

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