Who Sees You?

And he said to them, “Go into all the world and proclaim the good news to the whole creation. Mark 16:15 NRSV

In a recent radio show, the commentator told the story of MP900439536[1]a group of students meeting with various leaders to discuss important concerns. The event lasted several hours, and during the meeting a popular rap star appeared. His arrival was heralded by loud applause. He stayed for only 30 minutes. While there, he made a few comments that were not particularly helpful to the dialogue, but were met with thunderous applause.

After the singer left the gathering, the students were asked why they paid so much attention to him. One student spoke up and said, “We listen to those we see.”

What a remarkable statement! I think he is telling us that the generation we are educating today listens to those we put in front of them. When we provide role models through the media that appeal to some of the most base and vulgar aspects of the human experience, we should not be surprised when those watching end up valuing what they are hearing.

Of course I have little control over the media and music of my day. But I am someone seen by others. MP900422593[1]Every year hundreds of college students sit in my classroom for 30+ hours a semester. I am one of the instructors my college puts in front of them.

So I ask myself, what do they hear me say? Am I modeling a life that respects others, that values truth, that loves, honors and serves Jesus Christ? I hope so. I also hope that when I leave the classroom my students have heard words that have built them up, that have inspired them to learn more, to make positive changes in their life and to seek God.

You are also seen by many others. Those who see you are listening to you, whether you realize it or not. What is your life saying to them? What kind of message does the time you spent with them leave them with?

In the early church, Jesus’ disciples made themselves visible and proclaimed the good news. Many who saw them heard and responded.

MP900442849[1]Today you and I are the disciples Jesus is counting on. People listen to those they see. When you are seen, let the love of Jesus shine through your every thought, word and deed!

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