I still cringe when I think about it. Our son was in his mid teens. I was nearby while his mentor was talking about having alterations made to suits. He commented that usually the local place took a week or two, but, “I always tell them I need it within the next 48 hours. That way they do it right away, and I don’t have to wait.” This man was a pastor and, as I mentioned, my son’s mentor. What was his behavior saying to the people working at the alterations shop?
I am known throughout my community as a Christian. I talk often about things that go on at church and my involvement with our children’s ministry. So, whatever I do reflects on my ministry, my church, and Christianity as a whole. People who don’t know Christ lump us Christians all together. What one of us does affects the way we’re all seen.
When I think about our son’s former mentor, I am certain that he gave the impression that Christians are demanding. He had a lot of wonderful qualities, and we were pleased to have him in our son’s life at that time. Our son could hear and accept things from his mentor that he couldn’t hear from us. And, he still had our example and our guidance. In due course our son outgrew his mentor spiritually and realized that some of his mentor’s attitudes weren’t ones that he wanted to adopt. Eventually that mentor’s behavior did damage his ministry.
I’m not saying that as Christians we should never get angry and never make a demand. What I’m saying is that if you are calling yourself a Christian, you need to really think about the impression you’re making on the people you encounter regularly. After all, your life really is your testimony.