There is an adage that states, “More is caught than taught!” It is a powerful reminder that our actions have a greater impact than our words. It is convenient to fall for the belief that what I do does not matter. It may seem that way, or we want to see it that way. Yet, the Bible reminds us that our faithfulness matters.
Many years ago I was reminded of the impact of faithfulness in a negative way. I was in a position, as we all are, to represent Christ before my coworkers. Being a much younger man, I never considered that I was being watched by the non-Christian coworkers. They were not only listening to my talk about Jesus, but they were monitoring my actions. I was reminded of a powerful message when returning for a work event, I decided to blow past a coworker. Yes, I was going much faster than the speed limit! What he said when we got back to the office was, “I never expected that from you!” Oh, talk about the sting. It is so easy to blow our testimony before others. And yes, they are watching us closely even though they do not seem interested.
There are many examples on the importance of a follower of Jesus’ faithfulness. The Lord reminds us of the significance to Israel’s refusal to trust Him to enter the promised land. The consequence communicates a powerful truth. We read, “And your children shall be shepherds in the wilderness forty years and shall suffer for your faithlessness.” (Numbers 14:33a) Those that rejected God would end up dying as they wandered in the wilderness. And not only did they suffer, but their children also. We are reminded that my faithfulness matters.
King David, reminds us this same truth, but from the positive perspective. He writes, “I have been young, and now am old, yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken or his children begging for bread. He is ever lending generously, and his children become a blessing.” (Psalm 37:25–26) David reminds us is that one of the blessings of our faithfulness to the Lord is that it also has an impact on our children. Now we know that each person must make the choice to live for Christ and some choose not to. But that does not mean that your life is still not a testimony for them. That is why you must continue to live out your faith and pray. You do not know how God is going to use your faithfulness and prayers after you are gone.
Speaking of King David, his son Solomon would then reveal the impact on him. “When I was a son with my father, tender, the only one in the sight of my mother, he taught me and said to me, “Let your heart hold fast my words; keep my commandments, and live.” (Proverbs 4:3–4) Dad’s faithfulness had an impact on his kids. Solomon probably also penned these well-known words, “Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it.” (Proverbs 22:6)
Let me encourage you to think about the impact that your parents and grandparents faithfulness had upon you. I frequently hear others talk about consistency in reading the Bible, time spent in prayer, church attendance, helping others and ministry for Jesus.
Our faithfulness is the silent part of our lives that does not scream for attention but produces a huge impact on those who experience it!
-Pastor Joe Parkinson