When I first became a Christian, I was so thankful to be really alive that I wanted to celebrate my Christianity. I bought edgy “Christian” t-shirts with verses written on them and some jewelry to match. I even tried to get a personalized license plate, “PS139,” reflecting my favorite psalm that always reminds me that God is with me. Yet, for everything I might have done to try and reflect Jesus in my life, it was all for naught if I didn’t have one thing.

“By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”

John 13:35 (NIV)

The only thing we can do to show people we are Jesus’ disciples is to love each other. Going to church, wearing “Christian” clothing, getting tattoos, or putting bumper stickers on our cars doesn’t genuinely reflect that we are disciples of Christ. In fact, when you drive around with a bumper sticker on your car that says you love Jesus or you’re wearing a t-shirt that says the same, those things might do more harm than good if you’re not walking perfectly in all you do.

Think about it, if you have a bumper sticker that says, “I love Jesus,” and you cut someone off in traffic on purpose or by accident, how does that reflect on Christianity? If you cut the person off on purpose, that isn’t good, and if you did it by accident, unknowingly, that doesn’t look good either. In either case, the person you cut off may see your bumper sticker and express nothing but contempt for you and your love of Christ. We’d all be better off if you didn’t have that bumper sticker, t-shirt, tattoo, or enormous crucifix hanging from your neck if you’re going to act like an average person.

Yes, an average person. As Christians, we endeavor to follow Christ first and foremost in our lives, but, like everybody, we make mistakes. Yet, to those who do not know the Lord, our mistakes are worse when they know we know the Lord. I equate it to seeing a police car breaking the law without flashing lights and a siren. I’ve had a couple California Highway Patrol (CHP) friends, and I know some CHP officers take advantage of being in their police cars to speed and do other things they shouldn’t. Thus, whenever I see a police car do something like speed, run a light, not use a turn signal, etc., and they don’t have their lights on, I notice it, and I have to repent when I let it bother me. How much more when someone sees you representing God in an ungodly way?

While I still have my t-shirts and wear them occasionally, I am cognizant that the only way people will really know I follow Jesus is by the love I show.

Do you know God? God knows you, and he loves you. He sees you as significant because you are. No one is insignificant to Him. He’s with you today, and he wants you to know him. Jesus died for your sins and mine so we could be free of guilt, freed from death, and live eternally with him. Eternal salvation is just a prayer away.

Pray this prayer with me to accept the gift of salvation:

Lord Jesus, forgive me for all my sins. I repent from my ways. Wash me in your blood and cleanse me from all unrighteousness. I believe that you died on the cross, were buried, and on the third day, God the Father raised you from the dead. Right now, Lord Jesus, I open the door to my heart and receive you into my heart as my Lord and personal Savior. Amen.

If you prayed that prayer, then congratulations! You are on the first step of a brand new life. Allow me to be the first to welcome you to my family, the family of God. There are abundant resources available online for new Christians. You can visit here for more information on what to do next. You can also leave me a comment, and I’ll do my best to help you on the next step of this incredible journey.