Salt and light – witness, service, friendship

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By Dave Henning / December 18, 2020

Christians fulfill important callings in every place they reside, being salt and light (Matthew 5:13-16) through witness, service, and friendship. . . .  These can seem insignificant and even bothersome, but wherever God places you, He also calls you.  These are often the most life-impacting callings we have.”- Rev. Jeffrey Leininger

“Let you light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.”- Matthew 5:16 (NIV)

As Rev. Jeffrey Leininger moves on in Chapter 1 of Callings for Life, he stresses that every face we encounter and every place we find ourselves presents an opportunity to exercise vocation.  As Luther writes in his explanation of the First Article of the Creed (Small Catechism), we possess a shared humanity. Luther reminds us that God made us and all creatures.

In addition, Dietrich Bonhoeffer wrote in Life Together:

“I have community with others and will continue to have it only through Jesus Christ.  The more genuine and deep our community becomes, the more everything between us will recede, and the more clearly and purely will Jesus Christ and his work become the one and only thing that is alive between us.  We have one another only through Christ, but through Christ we really do have one another completely and for all eternity.”

Furthermore, your congregation = a place you’re called to be.  However, Rev. Leininger notes, one consequence of our freedom to worship involves seeing the congregation as a place for personal consumption.  Thus, people tend to shop around.

Instead, the author reminds us, our foundational calling remains as baptized children of God.  So, in your congregation, through service you extend God’s love to others.  Rev. Leininger concludes:

“If you begin to see your home church as a calling rather than a choice — a vocation given by God — they you’ll also begin seeking the Spirit’s fruit of love, joy, peace, patience, and gentleness in order to fulfill this calling.  A congregation is the place where you worship, receive God’s Word of life, and grow in knowledge and godliness.  It is also a place of calling.”

Today’s question: How do you witness as salt and light?  Please share.

Tomorrow’s blog: “Callings not static – come with blessings, burdens”

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Dave Henning

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