"Let your light so shine before men that they may see your moral excellence and your praiseworthy, noble, and good deeds and recognize and honor and praise and glorify your Father Who is in heaven." (Matthew 5:16, AMP)
I love to be around people who act like Christians. Strange thing to have to say, isn't it?
Jesus had a lot to say about hypocrisy among believers. He got in the face of religious people who said one thing and did another. He wasn't big on people wearing religion as a badge and never playing the part in real life. He didn't like the idea of putting on a show that wasn't consistent with one's life. He expected His followers to live in a way that was congruent with their faith.
We all know "Christians" in name, who don't act like Christians, right? To hear them talk, cheat, swear, lie and curse others is a bit incongruent with the Christian life.
We had an instructor in Bible school who cautioned all of us zealous students to make sure we love people and not just crowds. He noted his experience with ministers who loved to stand before a crowd and preach, but off the platform they were impersonal, unfriendly and rude towards people. That is incongruent.
It's incongruent to be a Christian and never talk about Christ; to be a believer and doubt most of the Bible; to be a follow of Christ and never submit to His lordship. It's oxymoronic.
We should be the same person in public who we are in private. If we lead people to the Lord from the pulpit, we should be proactive about leading people to the Lord in our private lives, too. If we pray tear-filled, passionate prayers in leading the prayer meeting, we ought to pray the same way in our private prayer closet. If we praise the Lord and lead worship from the stage, it should be obvious that we praise and worship off stage. If we tell everyone else to tithe and give to the gospel, we should be leading the charge by tithing and giving as much or more. If we quote the Bible to others, we need to live by the Bible in front of others. Right?
There's nothing more detrimental to Christianity than "schizo-Christian"—the one who puts on the church-face and makes a big hallelujah show for the public, but is hypocritical and carnal in private.
Today, let's do a little inventory. If we are going to be Christians—then, let's be Christians. Let's ask the Lord to shine His spotlight on areas of our lives, and let's get busy making any needed adjustments. Be congruent.
Say It: “Father, I want my life in Christ to be congruent. Shine Your spotlight on areas of my life—my words, actions and behavior—that are incongruent with Your Word and the Christian life. I ask for Your mercy and grace, I want my public and private life to be consistent and honoring to You. In Jesus' Name. Amen."