You are probably thinking a sunflower, and you are right! (You are also probably thinking, "Kim has really lost it!" But hang with me here.) Your keen eye probably noticed, as mine did, that this is not a sunflower field. This field is actually growing durum, but there is that sunflower right out in the field with the durum. Now, this is not necessarily an uncommon sight around here. It is a volunteer sunflower. But seeing it made me stop and think for a moment and I just had to take a picture.
You see, that sunflower represents what we are supposed to be as followers of Christ. When I saw that sunflower, I never had to stop and think, "I wonder if that is really a sunflower?" No, I new immediately that it definitely was a sunflower, there were no doubts. Is that not what we should be like in the world? The unsaved of the world should be able to just look at us and our lives and know, without a doubt that something is different. There should be no question in their minds that we are not just like them, no we have something special going on in our lives. That something special is the power, peace, love and joy of the almighty God flowing through us!
We Christians look too much like the "world" these days. I am not talking about how we are dressing (though for some that may be an issue, that is between you and God). I am talking about our lives, our actions, our words. Where is the love for the lost, and all people really?! God tells us over and over in His Word that we are to love, we should be known for how much we love people, no matter who they are. Can others even tell the difference between us and the rest of the world in the way we treat people?
What about our words? How are we using them? What are we allowing to come out of our mouths? Are we gossiping, slandering, and hurting others with our words or are we complaining and negative all the time?
What about our actions? Where are we choosing to go, what are we choosing to do, what are we filling our minds with? Yes, you may have the right to do some things, you may have the freedom. The Bible may not say that particular thing is wrong, but does that make it best? How is it affecting those around you? What are we watching, listening to and playing?
Seriously, can people look at us, like that sunflower, and know without a doubt that yes, that person is a follower of Jesus? Do we stand out? We need to stop blending in to the world to reach the world, the world wants something different. People have tasted the world and found it had nothing to offer and they are as empty as ever.
I am not saying we should shelter ourselves so we don't become like the world. Notice where that sunflower was. It was in the middle of that field, surrounded by durum. We need to be out there with the lost willing to come along side them and carry their burdens, willing to get dirty for the Lord and reach people where they are. But, we need to stop being just like those that don't know Christ and start standing out like that sunflower. People need to recognize the hope and joy that we have. They need to see love in our lives.
I write all this talking primarily to myself. God really made me stop and think about my life when I saw that sunflower. I had to ask myself, what do people see in me that is different? Is it obvious right away? And, finally, am I in the world reaching the lost?
One final thought. When I went back through the field, I couldn't find my little sunflower. It wasn't standing out any more. It took me a while and I found it trampled down. You know, that sunflower stood all alone. It wasn't surrounded by a few other sunflowers. We can't go through this life and out into the world without the support of other followers of Christ. We need those friends surrounding us, supporting us and praying for us.
So, how about you? Are you ready to stand out like that sunflower?