I got to church this morning and the first thing she said to me after she introduced herself was, "What kind of cat do you have?" I was dumbfounded. How did she know I had a cat? I told her about Misty and then asked her how she knew. She told me she could tell from the cat hair on my pant leg. I looked down and was horrified. What a way to make an impression on a first time visitor!
This morning Misty rubbed against my leg to show her affection and she left a calling card in a massive coat of cat hair. I couldn't believe it. Then I just laughed. That is when the thought hit me that if we could leave some kind of impression on people we meet we would be far more effective in our ministry. If people could just look at us and know we'd been with Jesus, our job as the church would be so much easier.
Then I stopped laughing. The truth is that our actions, our love, our temperament should all reflect the fact that we've been with Jesus. We shouldn't have to do anything. His love ought to shine through us. So what is stopping it?
The truth is maybe we brush him and any after effects off too quickly. We hide it. We tuck away any traces that we've been with him because we don't want to offend anyone. We put the joy in our pocket and put on a straight face because we don't want people to think we are "too" religious. As a result we come out looking like anyone else.
Maybe its time to let it go and let Jesus shine through us. Who cares what people think? As a matter of fact maybe we will run into people who are discouraged and broken hearted, people who are looking for Good News. When we let Jesus shine through us we might be just what they were looking for.
By the way, that woman concluded our chat by telling me she loved cats and was glad to know the pastor was a cat lover too. Who would have guessed it?