Therefore I, a prisoner for serving the Lord, beg you to lead a life worthy of your calling, for you have been called by God. Always be humble and gentle. Be patient with each other, making allowance for each other’s faults because of your love. Make every effort to keep yourselves united in the Spirit, binding yourselves together with peace. For there is one body and one Spirit, just as you have been called to one glorious hope for the future. Ephesians 4:1-4
While Paul was in prison, being jailed for his beliefs, he asked the believers to lead a life worthy of their calling. What exactly does that mean? First of all, let’s acknowledge that we are all called. If we know and love Jesus, we are called to serve Him and to be live witnesses for Him. What does it mean to be a live witness? I always thought it meant living in such a way that people who didn’t know Jesus would see Him in us. Then they would like what they saw, and they would want to get to know Jesus.
If we accept Jesus Christ as our Savior, but we are still unforgiving, selfish, judgmental, frustrated, always seeing the negative side of things, then are we reflecting Him in what we do? It takes a conscious effort every day to live lives worthy of our calling.
But life IS frustrating. We rush from our jobs to errands to chores, never having enough time to get things done. People hurt us and we react by acting wounded, or sometimes we even retaliate. We get annoyed with slow drivers, people who take too long in line, and people who don’t get out of our way. Somehow living lives worthy of our calling moves to the back of our minds in our day to day lives. We usually do an ok job of this on Sunday mornings, but sometimes we leave it in the church parking lot.
Let’s make a conscious effort to always focus on Jesus, so we can truly reflect who He is to the world. These verses give us some directions. Be humble. Be gentle. Be patient. Forgive and make allowances for the faults of others – and do it because of our love. This verse doesn’t say try to love, or love as best as you can — it says because of your love. It assumes that because we are in Christ, we already have the love to give. Sometimes in our busyness we just forget that it’s inside of us.
1 John 4:20 says, “if someone says, “I love God,” but hates a fellow believer, that person is a liar; for if we don’t love people we can see, how can we love God, whom we cannot see?” I love this verse because it reminds me that God made everyone and everything. So if we hate anyone, we are hating a part of God’s creation that He provided for use to see and to enjoy. And if people see us hating a part of His creation, then they aren’t seeing someone who really knows and loves God.
This is a high calling indeed, to reflect God’s love in everything that we do. It’s a high standard, but since God is asking us to do it, it must be an attainable goal. We just have to make a conscious effort every moment of every day. I will try.