Here is the eighth and final devotional by my good friend and brother, Joe Widick! Pray for me as I get on a plane back home in two days!
Several years back, Elaine and I began to notice a very peculiar looking squirrel getting into our bird feeders. All around their noses it was white. They definitely stood out. You may think I have something against God’s creatures, but I just did not want to feed the squirrels as well as the birds. So, I began to trap the squirrels and bring them to the city where I would release them. My guess is that some in the city catch squirrels and take them to the country. I thought I was rid of the white nosed squirrels until last week, when another one appeared. It had to be from the same family of squirrels. In appearance it is very different from any I have ever seen.
Something that is always on my mind is, do I act, think, speak, and appear differently from others in our world. I truly want to be different! Not in a strange way but in a good way. When I am seen in our community what do people think of? Am I showing those around me what Christianity is about? Or have I digressed to the point that knows one knows that I am one of God’s children. At one point I thought it was important to simply blend in with everyone else so I wouldn’t draw attention to myself. That thought is now foreign to me. I want our community to Christ living in me. In I Peter 2:9 you and I are challenged in a unique way by an apostle who at one time wanted to blend in with the crowd, but later understood the importance of making a firm stand for the Lord. Peter went from wanting to blend in with the crowd at the trial of Jesus, to being one of his greatest advocates on the Day of Pentecost. Let me remind you of the words of I Peter; “But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God…” “Chosen” Me! How I longed to be chosen for the ball team, how I longed to be chosen for this position or that position. I was chosen to be different, to belong to the God of the universe. WOW! But the verse does not stop there. Peter continues and says; “...that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.” Peter tells me that part of the being different; part of the privileges that come with being a chosen people is the responsibility of not keeping this good news to you. I need to let others know what it is that I believe. As you and I walk with the Lord, I pray that each of us will be living a life that calls other people to want to be a part of that life. Those others will see the joy of the abundant life and ask about it. Talking about being different! One can only imagine what would happen if 600 people from Maple Hill let their light shine to the point that people would want to know about the Jesus we believe and trust in.
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