It is fairly obvious I am not Chinese. Although my height does not set me apart, my eyes are blue and my hair is too light. The only phrases I speak in Chinese are “hello”, “thank you” and “How much does it cost?” The latter is THE most important phrase any woman in a foreign country needs to know. I am fairly proficient with chopsticks by Western standards, but my skills are comparatively inadequate abroad. So when I traveled to China, it was obvious I was not from there.
Psalm 137:4, “How can we sing the songs of the Lord while in a foreign land?” NIV
Sometimes we are not supposed to blend. We are called to be different. And it should be obvious we are not from here because we talk differently, dress differently and have a different culture.
John 17:16, “They are not of the world, as I am not of the world.” HCSB
CUT IT OFF
God commanded Abraham to circumcise himself and his sons. He wanted His chosen people to physically look different from the peoples around them. No doubt, He still wants His followers to look different from the world. He wants us to look like Him, so people know who we are from.
Colossians 2:11, “In him also you were circumcised with a circumcision made without hands, by putting off the body of the flesh, by the circumcision of Christ.” ESV
Although the command for external circumcision was intended for the Jews, followers of Jesus are to allow their hearts to be circumcised. Cutting off the foreskin was a painful, bloody mess; circumcision of the heart even more so. In both scenarios, the process is often private.
— Vickie Henderson (@rightsideuplife) May 8, 2015
Ezekiel 36:24-28, “For here’s what I’m going to do: I’m going to take you out of these countries, gather you from all over, and bring you back to your own land. I’ll pour pure water over you and scrub you clean. I’ll give you a new heart, put a new spirit in you. I’ll remove the stone heart from your body and replace it with a heart that’s God-willed , not self-willed. I’ll put my Spirit in you and make it possible for you to do what I tell you and live by my commands. You’ll once again live in the land I gave your ancestors. You’ll be my people! I’ll be your God!” MSG
HOW WILL THEY KNOW?
I want people to know I am not from here. It should be obvious. I want to focus on eternity and not get caught up in this world I am just passing through. Jesus told His disciples how the world would know they were following Him. The most obvious characteristic of a Christian is how they treat others, especially the unlovable.
John 13:34-35, “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. By this shall all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.” NKJV
WHERE ARE YOU FROM?
Be careful not to blend in with the world. Let’s speak differently, act differently and react differently. Although it is not necessary to be proficient with chopsticks, loving others is not optional. That is how they will know.
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