Unashamed

I confessed to my discussion group at my church’s young adult fellowship that I felt timid, almost apologetic, to share my faith at work. When given opportunities to talk about what I do on the weekends, or how I spend my time outside of work, I sometimes stumble over my words before sharing that I went to church or did something church-related or that I hung out with church-related people.

Truth be told, I am afraid of what these people would think of me. I am afraid of how they would judge me. I did not want to offend my colleagues, some of whom are quite adverse to Christianity, or to cause any controversy. They’ve seen too many fickle, self-proclaimed followers of Jesus. Who am I to tell others what to believe, especially after they’ve been poorly treated by so-called “Christians?” They have their own comfortable lifestyles, their own way of life.

Or at least that’s how I would reason to myself.

But I know in my heart that I’m wrong. I know that when I choose to love myself more in that moment, when I fear man more than God, that I fail to remember how important and life-changing the gospel message really is.

The gospel message that Jesus Christ came to die for sinners, to save them so that those who believe and repent of their sins could be reconciled to the holy and living God is the most powerful message and gift anyone could hear and receive. Jesus suffered and bore God’s wrath on Calvary so that we could stand blameless before God. When he hung on the cross, Jesus became sin for us even though he lived a perfect life. He humbled himself and died on that wretched cross so that we could be freed to worship God. His sacrifice on the cross was not an accident. It was all planned. And Jesus, in His sovereignty, knew that he would be the ultimate lamb to be slaughtered. He came to fulfill what was spoken about him hundreds of years earlier, in Isaiah 53:3-6 (ESV).

He was despised and rejected by men;
    a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief;
and as one from whom men hide their faces
    he was despised, and we esteemed him not.

Surely he has borne our griefs
    and carried our sorrows;
yet we esteemed him stricken,
    smitten by God, and afflicted.
But he was pierced for our transgressions;
    he was crushed for our iniquities;
upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace,
    and with his wounds we are healed.
All we like sheep have gone astray;
    we have turned—every one—to his own way;
and the Lord has laid on him
    the iniquity of us all.

When I preach the gospel to my own soul and remind myself of how it was sweet, undeserved grace that transformed my life, I can’t deny how powerful the gospel is. The gospel saves. The gospel brings hope and peace to the lost. The gospel transforms. The gospel frees me from seeking contentment and identity and approval in anything other than God. My pride is undone, tossed aside, because of what my Savior and King did for me on Calvary. While I cannot save my unbelieving friends, family, and coworkers, I am responsible for sharing my testimony and the message of redemption that is offered to all.

On this particular Good Friday leading up to Easter Sunday, my prayer for myself is to ask God for boldness to share the gospel. I desire to be unashamed of Jesus because he was unashamed of me when he went to die on my behalf. As I ask God to help me die to myself, I want to be able to echo Paul as he says in Galatians 6:14: “But far be it from me to boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world.

And I know I’m weak
I know I’m unworthy
To call upon Your name
But because of grace
Because of Your mercy
I stand here unashamed

“Unashamed” by Starfield

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7 Comments

  1. Aaron says:

    Thanks so much for sharing this! I totally understand and will be praying for you. Sometimes it’s good enough that people know you are a Christian and that you go to church. Let that be your testimony and let your actions and your lifestyle do the rest. I was just telling Jess how my friends know I go to church because of the pics I post on Instagram lol. It’s not the gospel, but it’s a start. Please pray for me too as I wish to be more bold about my faith.

    Liked by 1 person

    • endorap says:

      “Sometimes it’s good enough that people know you are a Christian and that you go to church.”

      Yeah, I agree that it’s the start, but I don’t know if it’s good enough. It feels like a cop-out sometimes. I mean, sure, maybe you wouldn’t be able to share the gospel with everyone that you come into contact with, and that it’s enough for them to know that you’re a Christian. But if we have the opportunity to see the same people on a daily or weekly basis, then there should be plenty of opportunities. I know that at work, I can easily bring up a great recipe that I tried or a good song that I’m listening to.

      Those are more trivial things in comparison to the gospel message. I believe that as we pray for opportunities to share about our faith, God will answer those prayers. The question is, are we willing to have faith and the courage to pray those kind of prayers? I know that I often don’t.

      But I will be praying for you and for myself to have greater boldness and urgency to share with people we come into contact with!

      Like

      • Aaron says:

        I agree with everything that you said! I should have wrote “sometimes it’s a good enough start that people know you are a christian and that you go to church.” This way, your actions and testimony can lead you to further conversations about the gospel, which you should absolutely do. I think context is good when sharing the gospel. Context about the life of both the christian and non christian. But of course, there’s nothing wrong with being totally bold and not having a starting place. This life is too short to worry about when the best time to share the gospel is, although it is something we should be praying for. The word of God cannot be bound.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Janna Lee says:

    Man, Ive been praying for opportunities too. I think praying about it softens our own hearts and opens our eyes to the opportunities that might present themselves!

    Like

    • endorap says:

      Aww, I’m glad to hear that!

      I agree with you! I think evangelism really begins with a battle of our own hearts first. It’s not that we don’t know how important the gospel is (or maybe we struggle with that, too), but we need a lot of humility, patience, and love that comes from God in order to share our faith. If you look at the early church in Acts 4:23-31, they started with praying for boldness and praying on behalf of the lost. They got it right, and I think that’s where we really struggle in our churches today. We think we need better programs or events, when we just really need to first ask God for boldness and strength to do His work.

      Like

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