Each month the elders and deacons have a meeting (the preacher gets to attend these meetings as well). Typically this meeting takes place following Sunday night services on the second Sunday of the month.
We have a very wonderful lady who, as part of her ministry, sees to it that we have sufficient sustenance to make it through these meetings. She provides a loaf of homemade bread for us...and we greatly appreciate this gesture.
Well, at our February meeting, one of the men grabbed a container of “I can’t believe its not butter” out of the refrigerator so that it could be used on the bread. When he set it down on the serving counter and opened it up...sure enough it was left over green beans!
In a manner of speaking, the label was exactly right...it did not have butter in it. But it also did not have what was expected either.
You wear a label. That label says “Christian.” You come to services. You sing songs that speak of loving and serving Jesus. On the outside, your label says “Christian.” So if someone were to “open you up” (not literally, but figuratively) what would they find?
By your actions, would they find a Christian? By your speech, would they find a Christian? By the example you set, would they find a Christian? By the way you conduct yourself in business, would they find a Christian? Or would they find something totally different?
It wasn’t a very big deal to put the lid back on the “not butter,” put it back in the refrigerator and get out some actual butter (or “46% vegetable oil spread”). There were no long lasting consequence.
But if on the inside you are not what your label says on the outside (i.e. “Christian”), that is a very big deal and the consequences can be eternal if you don’t change what is inside.