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Do Your Co-Workers Know You Are a Christian?


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I was at a bible study with a Christian friend and his family one night a few weeks ago and was surprised to learn that my friend's wife's co-workers don't know she is a Christian. 

 

Is this the norm?  The idea that "I believe in what I believe and I have no idea what you believe" because the subject is never broached?  You don't have to hit them over the head with your bible but is it loving to keep your faith a secret?

 

I was on another thread on this site which presumably is mostly Christian writers and I asked twice of this fellow if he is a Christian to which he didn't answer, prompting me to make a thread.  It's perfectly ok if you are not a Christian.  I am a Christian 24/7 and don't have an off switch.  I think most are Christian just one-day-on-a-Sunday and then back to the grind of every day life.  This is the seed that fell on stony ground and amongst the thorns.

 

TLDR: Do you keep your Christianity a secret?

 

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Sadly, Wesley, that's probably a true statement.  And I'm saying it's fine if someone is not a Christian as we all have free will.  I just don't see how someone who is a Christian and believes there will be a judgment day, would not be willing to share their faith with them.  

 

I don't want to see people that I knew in this life, standing in the wrong line on judgment day, and having them think: "if you knew I would end up here, then why didn't you tell me?"

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Guest Wesley Southern
1 minute ago, Acogah W Swann said:

(crickets) 

 

What do you think it means to be a Christian anyhow?

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Wes, first I already know you are not a believer (yet), and I'm cool with that.  

 

I'll summarize it here: Faith in Christ Jesus as your personal Savior. Jesus gave His life for us so that we could be reconciled with God.  All we need to do is to believe that; however, if someone believes that Jesus died for them and they are not willing to give their life back to Him then they're probably not a Christian.

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Guest Wesley Southern
Just now, Acogah W Swann said:

Who am I gossiping about?

 

Not you. I’m asking a general question.

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Guest Wesley Southern
Just now, Acogah W Swann said:

Pro 16:28 A perverse person stirs up conflict, and a gossip separates close friends.

 

Thank you. I hope people read this verse.

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Guest Wesley Southern

Haha, I’m not sure how many Christians really take that command to heart. I haven’t gotten much preaching xD

 

Well, except from you and a couple others, but it was weird.

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I am a zealot 24/7 but I also am well aware of the fact that not everyone is on board with that.  If someone doesn't want to hear it then I drop it.  I just want them to at least know what I believe.  When a believer shares God's word with someone, the bible refers to that as 'planting and watering' which is our job, but only God can provide the increase.  The call goes out to everyone.  Jesus died for you.  He loves you.  But His love alone will not save someone, because He needs to know you.

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As I work in a Christian School where all the staff are Christians, I'm sure all my co-workers know that I am a Christian, it's not something I've ever hidden as I have never cared what people think about me, although I have never revealed my beliefs in a way that would be offensive.

 

One of the major downfalls I have seen in churches and Christian culture is that Jesus commissioned us to go into all the world and make disciples, not converts. It's not just about bringing people to salvation, it's about relationship. The best way to witness to someone is to befriend them and show them the love of God, let the way you live your life be your main source of preaching and truth. Then when you have established some kind of rapport with them they will be more likely to hear what you are saying. Then you can share with them your beliefs and have a discussion, don't shove it down their throats.

 

It should be about a loving discourse not a debate. During a year long course I did I was never shy about my beliefs and everyone knew I was a Christian. Towards the end of that year a fellow student who was very open about being gay came up to me and told me that he respected me because unlike many Christians he had met, I never judged or condemned him. This opened up an avenue to have a discussion for him to better understand what I believe. Another student I became very good friends with, he wasn't a Christian, in fact his mother was a Buddhist and his father was a traditional Roman Catholic which left him very confused. He and I had many discussions about the beliefs of Christianity and I was able to help him understand many misconceptions he had about the faith. I never witnessed to him, I just gave him the truth and left the rest up to God and for him to respond in his own time and way. 

 

Being rebellious is the nature and instinct of humans, so being forceful in witnessing is much like any subject, telling people what to do or what to believe is more likely to push them away and rebel against the very thing you are trying to enlighten them with. Planting or watering a seed is not always about a direct approach because bringing someone to salvation is the job of the Holy Spirit to convict, soften their hearts and change their heart to be receptive to salvation. 

 

Songs like "Jesus Friend of Sinners" or "What This World Needs" by Casting Crowns says a lot about the way some Christians witness or approach non-Christians often forgetting where they have come from before they received salvation. A spoken section in the second song says something very revealing about how sometimes we think ourselves and our part in bringing the Gospel to people is more important than the message itself.

 

People aren't confused by the gospel

They're confused by us

Jesus is the only way to God

But we are not the only way to Jesus

This world doesn't need my tie, or my hoodie

My denomination or my translation of the Bible

They just need Jesus

We can be passionate about what we believe

But we can't strap ourselves to the Gospel

Cause we're slowing it down

Jesus is going to save the world

But maybe the best thing we can do

Is just get out of the way

 

 

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8 hours ago, Acogah W Swann said:

This was a verse I posted in another thread which is a command for all believers.

 

2 Timothy 4:2 Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine.

(I'm reading the thread before answering first question. I wasn't going to add pennies along the way, but then again, I also keep planning on being within my weight margin, and haven't been there often enough either.)

That verse is for believers, not nonbelievers. Try reproving or rebuking your boss, or your boss's boss and see how long you keep a job. Hard to let folks know what you believe if you aren't there to tell. Not much of a witness either, if they know you are a Christian, but got lippy with the boss anyway. And the biggest reason not to rebuke or provoke is 2 Peter 2:18-23. 

 

18 Servants, be subject to your masters with all respect, not only to the good and gentle but also to the unjust. 19 For this is a gracious thing, when, mindful of God, one endures sorrows while suffering unjustly. 20 For what credit is it if, when you sin and are beaten for it, you endure? But if when you do good and suffer for it you endure, this is a gracious thing in the sight of God. 21 For to this you have been called, because Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example, so that you might follow in his steps. 22 He committed no sin, neither was deceit found in his mouth. 23 When he was reviled, he did not revile in return; when he suffered, he did not threaten, but continued entrusting himself to him who judges justly.

 

And it is for believers because who does need preaching, provoking, reproving, rebuking, and exhortation more than believers? After all, we're the only ones fighting against our natural self. Being me is easy. Being the me God wants me to be makes bronco busting right after waking away from a car accident easy. Someone has to tell me when I'm doing it right. AND when I'm doing it wrong someone has to let me know in the longsuffering style using doctrine. Gently. (And I stink at gently, but it is easier to do gently with believers than nonbelievers.)

 

There are some reasons to speak up at work, but that verse isn't one of them. (Oh, and that's the first of my two-cents, if you were wondering about the penny comment earlier. 😊)

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I don't have a paid job. I haven't since 1998, then I started a single-person business and became disabled in the next year-and-a-half. So the only jobs I have now are taking care of hubby, of my home, and whoever else I can help as I'm able.

 

That said. Yes, I have been belittled, put down, insulted, and assumed stupid at work because I am God's kid. But, as often as I've had that happen to me, I also know the same bosses and coworkers trusted and respected me because I did my jobs well, was trustworthy, and didn't "get even." (And one of my bosses needled me to try to get me to come back at him. I'm not to shy to do that. Being a nonbeliever is sad already. Why would I add insult to that?)

 

Hubby fixed and installed heaters and (industrial-sized) air-conditioners when he was young. He became a believer, nine years before we met and married. When he was called to a customers house for lack of heat, (and mind you, no one finds out their heater isn't working when it's comfortable outside, so it is always an emergency), he'd preach the gospel to them. (He evangelized with the men who brought him to the Lord on weekend nights too, and God used him easily.)

 

He was fired because of customer complaints and unfixed heaters. So he, then I, adopted the work-is-work rule, because preaching the gospel when we're supposed to be working is stealing (time the boss is paying us to work.) Also, a lousy witness.

The cool part of hubby's story is he did figure out what he did wrong, got a new job, and immediately after work he went back to his old boss to apologize for his actions. The boss already knew he was good at the job, so it was a no brainer. He was offered his old job back. I don't remember if he took it, since he did go back just to apologize. (I don't think he did, since that would look like he was sucking up, instead of truly repenting.)

I am of the opinion that it is impossible to separate my beliefs from my reality. God is my "base." He is my ethics. He is my purpose. How does one separate that for the hours worked? I've never tried since I never worked as an unbeliever. (Saved at 16 years old.) But, I also remember on my last day at a job I had for nine years, the factory's GM, (and one of many co-workers I still miss), was shocked to find out I was a believer. I wasn't quite as shocked to find he was too. After all, a telltale sign is the general honorability of the worker. He worked hard, was good to his men, and gave the owners as much as he could. We just never got on that topic. We both simply though the other was a good guy.

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10 hours ago, Wesley Southern said:

I have a theory that most Christians are in the closet. 

Nope. However most people who claim they are Christians aren't. Growing up in a church doesn't mean they're Christian. Many assume it does. Being religious doesn't mean they're Christian. Thinking Jesus was a nice guy doesn't mean they're Christian. Using "praise God" and "bless you" as a catch phrases doesn't mean they're Christians. And creating a god they can handle and then calling that Yahweh doesn't mean they're Christians. Christianity isn't as wide a gate as the world keeps thinking.

 

Matthew 7:13 “Enter by the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. 14 For the gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few."

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Many Christians, no most, have not been taught, well, a lot of things. For instance, how to relate lovingly to others, how to give one's whole life to the Lord and allow Him to direct every part of their life, how to draw an unbeliever to Christ whether with words or with actions, among other things. Being enthusiastic and outgoing with one's faith is not always a draw. It's love and acceptance that draws. Jumping on an unbeliever with our beliefs only proves to make them turn tail and run the other way. Only love draws.

This quote has been disputed as to its originator but it bears pondering, "Preach the gospel at all times. Use words if necessary." Our lives, lived out each day in Christian love, can speak louder than any well-chosen words we could ever speak. It draws others in. They want to know what is different about us. Then words can be used. Not all personalities are equipped to be overt evangelists. God made us all different and because of this, He uses each of us in a different way to reach unbelievers.

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14 hours ago, Acogah W Swann said:

I asked twice of this fellow if he is a Christian to which he didn't answer, prompting me to make a thread. 

 

While this question in and of itself is acceptable in certain situations, I believe asking it of one of our members is insulting. There are two reasons (and possibly others) that he did not respond: 1) he didn't see your question, or 2) he ignored your question because he found it insulting or offensive. We all here know his heart and that it belongs to the Lord. While you may see nothing wrong with asking, it is out of place. Asking is tantamount to judging. Judging another's Christian position is not acceptable. That privilege only belongs to the Lord. I hope you understand.

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