Have you ever been sharing your faith with someone, perhaps a family member or close friend, only to have that person tell you, “don’t go there?” People feel that our beliefs are personal and therefore are somewhat sacred in such a way that we should never discuss or challenge them. If we disagree about things of such importance we are told to avoid the topic rather than cause any animosity or hurt feelings. If we can’t go there, I must ask, where do we go?
As a Christian, my faith is more than a religion, a philosophy, or a simple set of beliefs. My faith defines who I am. The Bible says that when I am saved my dead Spirit has been made alive and I am now a “new” creation. All I am now, I owe to Christ. He has saved me from sin and death and given to me a new and eternal life. Nothing I have done has brought about this transformation and it is my love for Christ that now motivates me in all that do. He has enveloped every part of my being, there is nothing His hand has not touched, yet I am not free to speak of this wonderful change in my life or the One whom brought it about. Why?
I ask those who love us, why they would want us to hide that which makes us whole from them? If they truly love us, why can’t we go there? When you love someone, do you ask that person to never speak of those things in their life that give them happiness? Should they hide their passions, their dreams, simply because you may not share them?
If I were a writer and won the Pulitzer Prize, would they request I not talk about the love I have for writing? If I won an Emmy should I refrain from ever mentioning acting? If I sing, should I not talk about music or if I dance should I not invite them to the performance? Why then, if we share all that we enjoy with those we love, must we refrain from sharing the greatest joy of all?
Love requires us to share all that we are, especially our faith, for that is not only something we enjoy, it makes us who we are. What is there to talk about if not faith? What does it profit a man to speak of books, of movies, of love, of passion and not speak of faith? We can gain knowledge of all these things and still lose our soul. In the end only one thing will matter, and that is our faith. Did we have the faith that will make a difference when we die? To share the joys that will pass away and not share the one thing in life that will last is not what a loved one would do.
Those who ask me to “not got there” are in reality asking me not to be me. I will not deny my Savior by adhering to their wishes. I hope they will understand that it is because I love them that I have to go there. I pray that I do so with gentleness and love so that they too can know the faith that has made me whole.
2 Cor 5:11 Since, then, we know what it is to fear the Lord, we try to persuade men... 16 So from now on we regard no one from a worldly point of view. Though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer. 17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come! 18 All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: 19 that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting men's sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. 20 We are therefore Christ's ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ's behalf: Be reconciled to God. 21 God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.