Yesterday on Sunday June 12th, I went to an international English speaking church in Stuttgart. I am still trying out new churches in the area, and it’s a great way to meet new people who share the same values and speak the same language.
I wanted to share the message which I thought was really important which is about identity and purpose.
The main message is about being a witness.
When we think of witnesses, we normally think of the people standing by after an accident or a crime who have witnessed the incident directly at the scene. These people have a first-hand account of what happened, and are valuable during an investigation. They are normally questioned and interviewed, or asked to speak in court to bear witness to the event. They have a responsibility to uphold in saying all that they know, and normally the witness is glad to do their part in helping solve a crime or relaying information to help someone or something. Witnesses are very important, as without them, the accident or crime would remain a mystery, and nobody would understand or have any clues. The witnesses may now know what or who they saw, or why, but that defeats the purpose, as all that matters is that they saw.
What I learned yesterday is that you can be, are a witness of Christ. Active Witnessing is proclaiming or testifying what we have observed and experienced about Christ. The same holds true as this type of witness: you may have, have witnessed Jesus in your life and/or what you know of to be true about Him, and this is a first-hand account. If you have ever felt God’s presence when you’re with someone, a group, in nature, or anywhere for that matter, you have first-handedly witnessed Christ.
The pastor described a story where he and some friends thought they were going to a local, indigenous church in South Africa, as when they entered, they couldn’t understand what they were chanting. Turns out, they were singing in English, there was just a stronger accent and they were repeating the same chorus over and over again. Immediately, him and his friends felt the power in the room amongst all the people singing and chanting along, and they dove in too singing the same lyrics over and over again for 20 strong minutes. He said it didn’t matter that they were singing the same lyrics on repeat, as he could feel God’s presence in the room. They could really be singing anything, as the real power was in God’s presence, not through the words.
This perspective and story really resonated with me and showed me that I am a witness of Christ all the time. When I know a verse to be so true, or I feel God’s presence in a certain situation, I become a witness and am responsible therein to proclaim what I hold true to the world. Whatever I observe or experience matters and is important enough to share with those around me. I have a responsibility to be a witness or ambassador of Christ! How special is that.
God wants us to be a witness of Christ everywhere: in our communities in which we live our daily lives. That means not only in church, but in our work places, schools, gyms, activities, concerts, cafes, restaurants, nature, and more! All the communities that you feel part of, that make you who you are, are perfect places to be a witness for Christ.
Living abroad can be difficult, especially when you don’t speak the language, and there are often times I don’t feel good enough or that I’m not where I’m supposed to be. The pastor yesterday specifically focused on the fact that you are exactly where you are supposed to be right now, in this very moment. Whether that be at your office desk tomorrow morning, sipping your coffee, at the gym, wherever. You have a purpose in this time and place where God has sent you. He wouldn’t just bring you or leave you there to suffer! There is a reason, and that reason must be to be a witness of God in that place.
Have you ever thought that you don’t belong somewhere, or that you don’t fit in exactly right? Well, God might just have you there for a purpose and soon you may understand. In the meantime, shine your light, where you are. You may find yourself at a crossroads, or at the end of a tunnel in which you don’t know how you got there, but rest assured you have a purpose in this place, at this very time. All you have to do is be yourself, shine your brightest, and be a witness of God’s good works and testimony.
As I am far from home, sometimes feeling out of place, I must remember:
I hope this message was inspiring, thought-provoking, and eye-opening to you, as it was to me. It really resonated with me, and what better way to apply the message than by sharing it with the world, to all of you, in the very place I am meant to be. In the coming days, weeks, and months, I hope to keep this message on my thoughts and prayers, as I want to remember to be a witness for Christ everyday.
Stay tuned for next week, as I may wrap-up the next message from this amazing pastor!
Have a blessed week everyone!
From the Butterfly Blessings creator,