This past month Michael Sam came out of the closet. This was a big deal because, if drafted, he could become the first openly gay player in the NFL. Our culture views this coming out as incredibly brave but wants to push Christians more and more “into the closet.” That’s why Pastor Trent Griffith challenged us this past Sunday, “I’m asking you to be at least as courageous as Michael Sam. Stop taking the path of least resistance. Come out Christian.”
Just that week I’d come out Christian in front of 120 freshmen at the local public high school. Because Jesus tells us to expect persecution, I wondered if they’d throw their lunches at me or kick me out–or both. It felt illegal. But of course it’s not. (At least not yet.)
So during the four-and-a-half hours while I shared writing tips as well as the process of writing Confessions of a Boy-Crazy Girl, I openly identified myself as a Jesus-follower and spoke freely about Him. Then I offered a copy of Confessions to anyone who wanted one.
To my utter amazement, over eighty students lined up for a book. They didn’t throw anything, and they didn’t kick me out. In fact, the teachers said it was the most inspiring thing that’s happened all year.
It must’ve been my orange shoes. (Kidding.)
But in all seriousness, I did put on special “shoes” that day. Ephesians 6:15 describes them this way:
And, as shoes for your feet, having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace.
Let’s break that down. It basically means, “Always be prepared to share the good news of peace with God and total well-being through Him.”
Whether you’re headed to high school or just playing ball with your friend at the park, strap on the “shoes” He’s given you. Isaiah 52:7 says,
How beautiful . . . are the feet of him who brings good news, who publishes peace, who brings good news of happiness, who publishes salvation, who says to Zion, “Your God reigns.”
I’m not telling you to cart around a heavy Bible or plaster your car with bumper stickers or leave tracts in the girls’ bathroom. I’m asking you to share the good news of happiness with those who have no true hope. Don’t let the names and labels you might be called keep you from sharing the fact that God has gone to crazy lengths to have a relationship with anyone who will accept His free gift of forgiveness through faith in His Son, Jesus.
After all, this was Jesus’ last instruction to us before He returned to heaven to prepare His home for us:
“Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age” (Matt. 28:19–20).
So how about it? What keeps you from coming out Christian?
The world is trying to shove Christians back in the closet, but I’m calling you out today. Will you join me?
“Coming Out Christian” was originally posted on LiesYoungWomenBelieve.com.
Paula (Hendricks) Marsteller is a compassionate Christian communicator.