What is it about you that causes others to be aware of your faith? If a co-worker or friend had a Bible question, would they know that you might be able to answer their question? We become so busy in our daily lives as students, homemakers, wage earners, and parents that we forget to allow the most important aspect of our lives to become the most obvious.

When our son was in high school, he took a Bible to school. Many lunch periods were spent in Bible discussions with friends and acquaintances. It was his reputation and example of a working faith that sometimes caused him to be bullied but often proved his honesty and intent. He did not allow what others said about him to be the standard for his reputation. Instead, his willingness to share the message of the Bible he carried outshone any words that others might have said about him.

Recently, my daughter told the story of her family shopping in a store with breakable objects. Her 3-year-old daughter, Addie, picked up an object and when told to put it back, she dropped it and it broke into pieces. Instead of walking away, Addie and her mother picked up the pieces and took them to the clerk. Addie told the clerk what had happened. The clerk thanked her for being honest and told of a similar experience that same day. A little boy had dropped an object and broken it. The family hurried to the front door. When the clerk stopped them and asked if they had broken the item, the mother completely denied it. Both children learned a lesson that day and both lessons were learned by example.

If a stranger listened to your conversations or watched your actions, would they see your faith reflected in the simple things you do each day? As Christians, we are called to set the standard for others. The Apostle Paul reminded the Colossian Christians that they were “God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved.” (Col. 3:12) He instructed them to clothe themselves with “compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience.” Those are the characteristics that should be part of our everyday demeanor. Without them, we are not setting the example that Christ expects of us.

Do you make fun of those who look or act different because of a physical characteristic or ability? Where is your compassion? If a stranger needs assistance, do you walk away and pretend you didn’t see? Where is your kindness? Do you complain about other drivers when you are driving your children to school? Where is your patience? Certainly we set an example when we read the Bible, say family prayers, and attend church. But even more important are the everyday simple things we say and do. These are the occasions that set an example for those around us.

Margaret Batterton