James A. Washington

“Blessed and highly favored.” I don’t know where this phrase comes from. But I do understand what it means and, by uttering it, some of us accept its responsibilities and yes, even its consequences.

Another way of saying this in the physical realm is: “To whom much is given, much is expected (in return).” However you look at it, there appears to be an awesome responsibility associated with the knowledge that somehow life has been good to you.

Forgive me if I simply believe that if you believe in Jesus and understand He is the source of your salvation, then you, too, are blessed and highly favored. As a matter of fact, you might as well add that with the spiritual truth, that to whom much is given, much is expected.

Along with the truth of Jesus as Lord, comes the obligation then to share that goodness. After all, eternal life, the gift of glory, the reality that I will never die, qualifies me as “to whom much is given.” It’s the “much is expected” part that I’m trying to get you to take a look at.

If you know (and accept) Jesus as your Lord and Savior, that’s a bunch right there. With that knowledge comes the responsibility, yes, even the obligation to let His light shine so brightly in you that upon seeing you, others also see Him.

That then begs the question: what have you done for Him lately? In my limited capacity to understand the Master’s plan, I think the best way to serve God is to serve my fellow man. The best thing I can do is to spread the Word of God by acknowledging my gifts and talents as God-given blessings and by using them as best I can doing what I know to be His will.

Many of us have taken tests to get a handle on our spiritual gifts. I am trying not to be one of those who wastes them. That means that regardless of status or socioeconomic circumstance, your individual plight in life or even the physical state of your well-being, if you know Jesus, you’ve got work to do letting the world know that you know that you know. It’s not really that complicated, and the model of Jesus Christ is about as clear as it gets. Spread His message of love thy neighbor as thyself along with loving God as no other and you’ll begin to see what I mean.

It’s an awesome cross to bear, but yet a necessary one. How many people do you know that upon describing you would say, first and foremost, you are a devout Christian? A practicing Christian? A struggling-real-hard-to-be-a-good Christian? That alone requires an effort.

For the record, I love the Lord. I accept Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior and, if you’ve got a minute, I’ll be happy to tell you why. You see, I’ve got a testimony, as you probably do too. But for right now, let’s start with the fact that I’ll never die because He lives. It gives me great reason to wake up every day and look forward to the day that the Lord has made.

Whatever happens, I’m in His hands and guess what? So are you. Every now and then, you might just want to tell somebody.

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