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I found an old note this week that I had made during a vacation a few years ago. The thought concerns being a "contagious Christian. But looking at our lives, at my own life, it's often not so enviable. And when is it enviable? When you are always kind, cheerful and optimistic? When you don't make mistakes, have a perfect life have? Always putting yourself out there for others?
Upon hearing the song "Then they Will know" (Preson Phillips), the following tenor in particular struck me: 'If we love, if we are forgiven, then they will know that we are loved, that we are forgiven.' And that is the heart of Christianity. All outward appearances and 'how you come across' fall away from the authenticity of actually being forgiven, being loved. That is contagious. And that is such a rich breeding ground that more follows automatically, more forgiveness, more love. Not as a goal, but as a consequence. I had to think of what I had read the day before with Wiman (my clear abyss):
'Innocence throws us back to God's first call, to every moment in our lives when we were struck dumb, with fear, wonder. If it is absent, then there is no point in pleading before God in order to convince others, because we ourselves are not convinced.' - Christian Wiman
God's presence, forgiveness and love must first of all be present in our own lives if it is to powerfully permeate the lives of others. So it is not 'look what we have to offer', but: through our lives you can see that we ourselves are forgiven and loved. That is enviable Christianity.
This thought takes the pressure off. It defines you by who you are before God instead of who you think you should be and that's fine!