“But I had concern for My holy name, which the house of Israel had profaned among the nations wherever they went.” Ezekiel 36:21
What do our lives say about the God we serve?
Our company underwent a rebranding recently. We have had all sorts of changes commence since then. It is an exciting time for us as a company. Shortly after the new name reveal and release we were sent a correspondence outlining guidelines for using our new logo. There are rules now for presenting ourselves to the outside world of business. Our focus is uniformity on the front lines. The font is specified, the colors are assigned, the format all the same. Even though our jobs are different and our reasons for reaching outside of the company vary, we are to appear cohesive and in a crisp professional manner. Afterall, our appearance makes an important statement about our company.
The Israelites were a nameless people before God called them out of obscurity. He gave them the guidelines to live by in order to be set apart from the rest of the world. There were rules for how to treat strangers, rules for helping the poor, rules for offerings and feasts to be observed. Although each tribe had their particular role, they were to follow the same guidelines in presenting themselves set apart. These guidelines were for their good and for God’s glory.
The history of the Israelites was a very long and hard road. They went through periods of prosperity followed by periods of wrath and judgement. At the time of this passage, they were enduring the judgement for forsaking their covenant with God.
“…I had concern for My holy name, which the house of Israel had profaned among the nations…” Notice God’s serious statement about the sinful actions of His people in this verse. Their actions didn’t just result in His judgement. They didn’t just effect the Israelites. Their actions were against God. They profaned His holy name.
This makes me think about our testimony. Much like the rebranding of my company and the salvation of the Israelites, once we are saved, we, as children of God, are to undergo a real change. Our lives become a representation of God. The things we talk about, the way we treat others, the integrity we live by, all of these things either affirm the one true God or they defame Him. The choices we make, make a statement about our God.
So, I ask again…What are our actions saying about God?
Are we hateful or loving? Are we bitter or full of joy? Are we plagued by worry or free in peace? Are our lives marked but frustration or do we live in patience? Are we living in unforgiveness or do we freely forgive? Are we spiteful or kind? Do we hide evil in our hearts or are we filled with goodness? Are we faithless or faithful? Are our actions abrasive and damaging to others or do we act in gentleness? Do we constantly overindulge or do we live in a state of self-control?Do our lives bear the fruit of the Spirit? Or are we just as desolate as the rest of the world?
Jesus himself said, “Therefore by their fruits you will know them.” (Matthew 7:20)
If we are God’s children, as we claim we are, then we have a duty to make sure our actions glorify His holy name. For most of the world, we are the only physical representation of who God truly is, so we have to point to His righteousness. We have to reflect His love. We have to display His mercy and grace. We have to freely give forgiveness. It is our duty. It is our honor. Our God in His awesome perfection and holiness, stooped to lift us up out of the sinful mire. He saved us by His amazing grace. He provided freedom from the chains of our inherited slavery. Our every breath should point to His perfection, we should reflect His righteousness in all we say and do. Anything less should be absolutely inconceivable.