What Does A Christian Look Like?

What Does A Christian Look Like?

How do you define a Christian? We all have our preconceived ideas. Of course they have to believe in Jesus Christ and receive Him as their Lord and Savior. That goes every time. But what about the rest?

In our society we have images which pop into our heads. We might imagine a man in a suit and tie and a woman in her heels. (Or if you run in the circles I do, you imagine a man not in a suit and tie, and a woman in pants or jeans). In either case, we think of dedicated church goers, with Bibles in hand, leading in prayer, having solid families. Usually they are leaders in the community.

But is that all? Is everyone that way? What about Mark?

Mark is a man who is now in his seventies and had never been in a church until about four years ago, when he came and prayed to receive Jesus. His wife passed away much earlier, and he was very lonely. He lives in a small mobile home at the edge of the town with his grandson, whom he raised. (Now the young man is in his mid twenties, but he doesn’t work and counts on his grandfather for support).

Mark is a quiet man, but every now and then he’ll tell a story which gives us a glimpse of his life.There is a reason that he never learned to read. When he was in the second grade, his father took him out of school so that he could help with the farm chores. (They were sharecroppers). He worked hard, long hours on the farm. But that’s not all that he did.

His grandfather was a moonshiner. He had a still back in the woods, and when the old man had an order, he would have Mark travel by foot to deliver the brew. It was risky, so the young boy learned how to look out for the “law.” On occasion he might have to duck into the edge of the woods, so as not to be seen. This grandfather was a hard man. If the young lad didn’t make it back in time for dinner, he wouldn’t get his food. Food was served twice a day, and anyone not around for the meal would have to wait until the next one.

Mark later got married, had children, and raised a family. Over the years, his farming and moonshining gave way to factory work. He worked at a local plant, running machines, and doing janitorial work. His attendance record was almost perfect. One of his greatest possessions was a jacket which he earned as “Employee Of The Year.”

Mark told me that while his wife was alive they would “fuss a lot.” He feels bad about that. He says that “he didn’t always do what he should have done.”He’s glad that he can pray and that Jesus has forgiven him.

He has been retired a few years, but Mark still does odd jobs. And he walks. He walks several miles a day – sometimes to the store, to a working assignment, and sometimes to church. He loves to work and he loves to walk. It makes him feel better.

Mark doesn’t bring a Bible to church, since he can’t read it. But every Sunday, for the last few years, he has sat on the front row on the far right of the church. And every Sunday, he has listened attentively as sermons were preached or testimonies given. His heart is tender, as he kneels and prays at the altar. He wants to “keep things right with God.”

We need to broaden our perspective. We need to realize that out there – in the masses of people who throng by every day, there are other Marks. They might not look like they would be interested in Jesus. And they might not act like it. Yet within their hearts is a desire to connect with their Maker and to connect with the truth. They want to know what the Bible says, and they want to learn how to pray. They might be outside of the box we expect people to be in, but they are not outside of the box in Jesus’s eyes.

I don’t know about you, but I want to look for more of the Marks. I am asking God to open my eyes and ears to see and hear what he wants to tell me so that I can reach others who are seeking the truth. I’ll try not to judge by what my natural eyes see, but I will try to judge by my spiritual eyes.

Dear Lord, help me to do this. I know how special these little ones are to you. Help me to do this.




A Greater Purpose of Faith

A Greater Purpose of Faith

We often talk about faith, because “without faith it’s impossible to please God.” (Hebrews 11:6) We know that we receive all that he has for us by faith. (“Through faith and patience we inherit the promises”). (Hebrews 6:12). It pleases our Father to bless us with His presence and all that He has provided. But this is not all that there is to faith.

When we are walking with God, we will begin to feel His heartbeat and His purpose will grow within us. The purpose in His heart is not just for us to have a blessed life. His purpose includes eternity and all that implies. The first implication of eternity is who is going to be there. Are you? Of course you are. But what about your neighbors? Are they?

I want to challenge you to do something. Purchase a notebook and write down a list of people who come to mind who are not walking with God. Your family members, neighbors, co-workers (yes, even that mean one), and friends. Then pray over that list everyday. Lay your hand upon the page and pray for these people to have their eyes opened to the truth. Ask God to show you if there is anything you need to say to them. Do you need to share about your relationship with your Savior?

Every situation is different, so you need to listen closely to God’s direction. Many of those you know have been hurt by those who proclaim to be Christians. Perhaps legalism has crushed or frightened them. Perhaps the hypocrisy of leaders has disillusioned them. And of course, many lies have been perpetrated to confuse and discourage those who might be seeking the true God.

One thing is for certain – these people do not have the faith that they need to walk with God. They do not have faith that their prayers will be answered. They certainly do not know that God loves them and has a good plan for them.

So that’s where you come in. These people need your faith. They need your prayers. While you couldn’t save yourself from your sin, Jesus did that for you. Now you will extend His ministry by doing for others what they cannot do for themselves.

Ask God to open your eyes to this ministry of intercession. You will pray for those who can’t pray for themselves, asking God to show His mercy to those around you. He wants His grace to be available to all. When those around you don’t know how to pray for themselves, your prayers on their behalf are crucial to His plan.

Yet there is more. After you pray, you may need to share your faith or encourage those for whom you have prayed.Tell them of God’s love for them as individuals. Answer questions, pray with them, and be the ambassador of heaven you were called to be.

There are so many in our society today who really want to know the truth, but have never had it represented in a credible way. You can be that person they need to hear. They need your word, they need your prayers, and they need your faith. Will you be one who represents your Lord in the earth?

That’s the greatest purpose of your faith.

Forever Upward,

Suellen Estes

Have You Made The Right Decision?

I still remember the day when I gave my life to the Lord. I had been pridefully living my way, with my opinions, and my pursuits, but I found that my road had taken me to a dead end. On that night, I fell on the floor face down and surrendered, saying, “Jesus, if you are real, I want you and I need you.””

The liquid love that encompassed me at that moment was one of the most dramatic experiences ever. He was and is real and He changed my life forever. I have been walking with Him ever since.

Have things always been easy? Of course not. But whatever the external circumstances, I knew that He would empower me to live above the fray. And He has.

Today’s video is a composite of teachings from Billy Graham. If you aren’t free today – from shame, depression, anger, sorrow, you can be.

Just listen.


This video compliments of Peacewithgod.net