“…put off, concerning your former conduct, the old man which grows corrupt according to the deceitful lusts, and be renewed in the spirit of your mind, and that you put on the new man which was created according to God, in true righteousness and holiness.” Eph. 2:22-24
“I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.” Romans 12:1-2
“Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven.” Mt. 7:21 (underlining added)
If you’re as old as I am, or have children who are, and live in America, perhaps you remember the Sesame Street game – and song – in which the children viewers are supposed to figure out which one of the images on the television doesn’t belong. Which one stands out from the crowd. Which one looks different. Which one doesn’t fit with all the others. Which one stands apart. Which one stands out when all the others belong together.
But the message on my heart isn’t about a game. It’s about our lives. Yes, yours and mine. See, if you mix into a crowd of people a genuine Christ follower, someone who calls Jesus Christ Lord, who believes Jesus Christ is the Son of God, who believes Christ is Lord and died on the cross to pay the penalty for his or her sins and was raised from the dead, who puts his or her trust in Christ as Lord, who has sincerely committed his or her life to Christ, he or she should stand out from the crowd because he or she is living according to the ways of the Lord instead of the ways of this world.
An eternal relationship with God is not for those who merely call Jesus Christ Lord and believe intellectually that He died on the cross and was raised from the dead, but for those who whose genuine belief in Christ as Lord manifests in a lifestyle of living by the Spirit of God according to the Word of God for the glory of the Lord such that one will think, speak, and act in such a way that we should stand out in a crowd of people as belonging to the Lord and to His forever Kingdom whereby anyone looking at the crowd of people should be able to figure out which one is different from the rest.
When you stand in a crowd of people, wherever that may be, whether it be at a sports game, in a homeless shelter where you’re staying, at the workplace, in a hospital waiting room, in a grocery store, in a prison yard, at intermission during the opera, at an election site, absolutely wherever, whenever, can people tell you are a devoted follower of the Lord Jesus Christ? Or, do you look, and sound, and act like everyone else in the crowd?