“You are the ones chosen by God, chosen for the high calling of priestly work, chosen to be a holy people, God’s instruments to do his work and speak out for him, to tell others of the night-and-day difference he made for you—from nothing to something, from rejected to accepted.” (1 Peter 2:9-10, The Message)
Take a close look at the two pictures below. Notice the difference between the two images. Take all the time you need to figure it out.
I’m just guessing you had no problem with that little exercise at all, right? The difference between night and day in the two pictures is blatantly obvious, isn’t it? There is really no confusing the two. The differences are immediately noticeable. You don’t have to think about it, or analyze it, or get out the magnifying glass and examine it. You just know day from night when you see it.
In the same way, Peter tells us that we as God’s people should be just as significantly different than everyone else we run across in the world. He says that comparing the life of a believer to the life of a non-believer should be like comparing day and night. You should immediately be able to tell them apart just by looking at them.
Which begs a much tougher question for us. Is the difference between you (as a Christian) and some other person out in the world (not a Christian) as noticeably, blatantly, and obviously different than the two images above? If not, why not?
The reason this is important is because living differently in the world is part of the way we are “on mission.” Peter says it this way a few verses later in 1 Peter 2:12, “Conduct yourselves honorably among the Gentiles, so that, though they malign you as evildoers, they may see your honorable deeds and glorify God when he comes to judge.”
We’re called to obviously, noticeably, blatantly, and significantly live different. To live differently among the people we work with and the ones we go to school with. To live differently among our neighbors and co-workers. To live differently at the grocery store, and the coffee joint, and the gas station.
Why? So that… When people interact with us, they can see the night-and-day difference in us and eventually and hopefully come to glorify God through our example.
This week, we’re continuing our “On Mission” sermon series. Last week we talked about being on mission in our own homes and to our own families. This week we take a step out to widen the circle a little more. Besides our family the people we spend the most time with on a regular basis are the people with whom we work, this is our second mission field.
We have the privilege of having guest preachers Wes and Joy Griffin of the International Leadership Institute who will be helping us to consider how we can be on mission in our workplaces. Also, this week in Oswego (and November 13th in Naperville) is our Mission Experience where you can learn about the local and global missionaries we partner with through Faith Promise.