How Are Christians To Conduct Themselves Towards Unbelievers? According to Jesus Christ we are to be "in the world, but not "of the world." John 17:15 I would like to begin "where the rubber meets the road" and examine one aspect of how we live out our Christian faith in a world where the unredeemed constitute the majority of people we encounter daily. In a word, I refer to "transparency." Don't pretend to be what you are not. In the absolute sense we will not achieve this in totality while dwelling in these vessels of clay. But we should aspire to be honest with God, ourselves and others. Nothing is observed so quickly and so critically as hypocrisy. Children are especially good at seeing this and man does it turn them off in a hurry. Non-believers see it and raise it as one of the first justifications of why they do not embrace Christianity. There are just too many hypocrites in the church! While we can respond to them by saying, "Come on in, there is always room for one more", it cannot be used as an excuse on our part. That they see such inconsistency in our lives that they are turned away from even the thought of considering Jesus Christ indicates that our lives do not even vaguely match our profession of faith. I work closely with a large number of people as a nurse. There are many stressors in that environment due to workload, acute incidences of sickness and death, working conditions, all the different personalities of staff (including my own), dealing with management, families, patients etc. Everyone gets stretched and at times and it can manifest itself openly and in not so nice ways. As a Christian there are times when I have had to go to a co-worker and apologize for a terse reply in the midst of a situation, or acting uncharitably towards someone perhaps just in attitude. And not just say "I am sorry." but also ask them, "Will you please forgive me?" I have not had to do this very often but I have had to do it. As time goes on and I grow in Jesus these times are becoming fewer but pride is always lurking at the door and I must be vigilant. I have openly told my co-workers that if at any time I offend them or am not displaying a respectful attitude to please tell me, I want to know when I do and I want to correct it immediately. I tell them that I "blow it... big time" on occasion and I need to be corrected when I do. Everyone is quite aware of my profession of faith in Christ and I desire to be transparent about my many weaknesses. I pray too that they would see Christ in me and I realize that this may be at times when I least expect so. All this must be done in the context of my knowledge of the fact that I am a most undeserving sinner and in the strength of the Holy Spirit. I pray by the grace of God, as His child, that I would be humble and faithful in serving others in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ. "... but in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect..." I Peter 3:15 "Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity. Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone." Colossians 4:5.6. The above approach has resulted in God opening doors to share His Word with some of the most unlikely individuals in the most unlikely of circumstances. But is that not just like the Lord? " "For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts." Isaiah 55:8,9. _______________ Reposted from a friend...and remember, when others see your shortness of temper, attitude, loss of it etc. it says volumes about Jesus Christ. It's a poor testimony and reflection on Him and should not be in a Christians life, or should be apologized for no matter whether the original fault was yours or not.