If you’ve ever toured historic buildings or art museums then you’ve likely seen the sign: NO PHOTOS! That sign is just begging to be broken. How many of us can say we’ve never snuck our phones out to take a picture while the sign said not to? Or, how many of us have tried to inconspicuously take a picture or video of someone without them noticing? I remember walking through St. Paul’s Cathedral in London while on a school trip and doing my best to capture the murals on the ceilings. Yet, instead of getting a good picture of the art, I got a nice snapshot looking up my nose! Even if you are one of the few rule-followers, there are many others who are snapping these pictures all the time!

With 90 percent of American’s owning a cell phone, it is no surprise that there is a camera in almost every pocket or purse. Anyone at anytime has the means to take a picture or video. This means that any one of us could be the next viral photo or video uploaded to social media. The next thing you say or do could populate the newsfeeds. This realization begs the question: what would people see if someone were to catch a snapshot of any one moment of your daily life?

Would others capture moments of selfishness or selflessness? Would they be more likely to get a video of you being patient or impatient? Would someone record you using words to encourage or tear down? Thinking about these questions shouldn’t make you want to live your life constantly looking over your shoulder. Instead, these questions should encourage you to take seriously the idea that the way you live your life is your testimony on full display for the world to see.

John Wesley encouraged his listeners to consider the idea of Christian Perfection — not that we would be “perfect” but that we might consistently choose to act like Christ in all we do and say. This is incredibly important to reflect on because we live in an age where the conduct of our lives is under constant scrutiny — and maybe that’s not a bad thing.

I help coach the boys’ soccer team at Wesleyan Christian Academy in High Point, North Carolina. One of things we always tell the boys is that the call of Christ compels us to live our lives to a higher standard. Whether the boys are on the soccer field, in the classroom or anywhere else, the conduct of their lives proves who they are. This is essentially the same instructions Paul gives to Titus when he said that anyone who works for God should be “above reproach” (Titus 1:7). Paul is saying that anyone’s Christian character should be fully evident by all the things he or she says and does. No one should be able to bring a case against you. Paul later goes on to drive this point home when he writes how many profess to know God but, “deny Him by their works” (Titus 1:16). A lot of people like to think they are Christians but fail to confirm this in the way they live their lives.

What would someone catch you doing if they were to sneak a picture of you during your day? Would your testimony prove that you don’t really know God? Or would your actions and words reflect the love and hope you find in Christ?

Zach Derr

 

Zach Derr serves as a professor, student and coach. He has been teaching online classes in Missions, Church History, Theology and Bible for Wesley Seminary since 2013. Currently, he is working on his Ph. D on Christian-Muslim relations from the University of Manchester (UK). Additionally, he coaches the boys and girls middle school soccer teams at Wesleyan Christian Academy in North Carolina. Derr is supported by his wife, Jenny, and son, Hudson, and enjoys reading, writing and soccer.