That my heart may sing your praises and not be silent. LORD my God, I will praise you forever. (Psalm 30:12 NIV)
There are so many different kinds of Christians.
The Pharisee wears all the right clothes and facial expressions, refuses to do anything “fun,” and is too good to behave in a human way. They were born in the wrong era. Hating to get their hands dirty, they are quick to point out the dirt in others lives. When someone has a problem they know they don’t want to talk about it with this person, because they will only find more guilt piled on top.
Like a secret boyfriend or girlfriend, the second kind of Christian keeps Jesus as their secret. They live pretty much like the rest of the world, but keeps from cursing, drinking, or other small vices in hopes that someone might see their witness and notice they are different. Usually, no one does. When a friend has a problem, they usually don’t even think about coming to this person for help. It just never crosses their mind.
Then there is the down and dirty Christian. The true Jesus Freak. This one can’t stop talking about Jesus to the point that people are sick of hearing about Him. The funny thing is that when someone has a problem they know they can rely on this Jesus Freak for help.
The funny thing about all three of these “Christians” is that I have been all three. And in pretty much the same order. Right now I’m in my Jesus Freak stage.
Because of the service by which you have proved yourselves, others will praise God for the obedience that accompanies your confession of the gospel of Christ, and for your generosity in sharing with them and with everyone else. (2 Corinthians 9:13 NIV)
Being an open Christian is sometimes hard and often scary. The world thinks of all open Christians as being like the Judgmental Pharisee type. The funniest thing for me is that when I was in this stage, I had never even read my Bible, but I sure went to church every time the doors were opened.
The world needs us to be the hands and feet of Jesus. To work and be fruitful for the Lord is what is required. God wants us to be light and salt. If we hide Him in our hearts, who will ever know the secret?
Through Jesus, therefore, let us continually offer to God a sacrifice of praise—the fruit of lips that openly profess his name. (Hebrews 13:15 NIV)
And that is the secret. In this passage from Hebrews lies the formula for becoming the best sort of Christian. When you open your mouth, do not be afraid to say His name. But! When you open your mouth, be sure that praise is what comes out continually!
Think about it! If when you say His name in praise, how can you then be judgmental? If you say His name in praise, how can you not bring healing? Do not hide behind your silence or your judgment. Bring about the JOY of the Lord by being a Praise Warrior for Him!