(Friends: I don't like sending out too many repeats. We did one on Monday, and this is another. However, Frances and I discussed the theme today, which reminded of this, written and published in 2015. It's one of my personal favorites because of the subject matter, so I thought I'd send it again. Thanks, Glen)
A visit to a fine jewelry store often involves direct contact with one of the establishment's employees. The salesperson who greets and serves the customer plays a vital role in the success of the business. However, the salesperson occupies only one link in a chain of people responsible for making metals and gemstones available for purchase.
The first link of the chain is the miner, the laborer easily forgotten by those standing in a beautifully adorned showroom. Without the efforts of such ones who risk their lives in dangerous caverns and abysses, jewelry stores could not even exist. The unheralded miner, toiling in the bowels of the earth and perhaps stressed more than any other link in the chain, does his job in order that the beauty he unearths might be available to the jewelry store patron.
In similar manner, while pastors, preachers, and writers serve a necessary role in communicating the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ, the bulk of God's redeeming work occurs far away from pulpits. Believers living lives that exemplify and testify of Christ along the everyday paths of life bear far more influence than any other agency of the Holy Spirit. This does not minimize the important of Christian communicators. However, positive response to sermons often (perhaps always) requires the preparatory work of Christ's character revealed by Christians in the recipient's everyday environment.
The miner who labors in the bowels of the earth receives little consideration by the jewelry store patron who forgets that glimmering baubles must be unearthed by hard and hidden labors. We may also forget that response to a good sermon or well-prepared lesson actually begins when people see the Lord Jesus exemplified or communicated by Christians who may not stand in pulpits, but who walk well along pathways of godliness. God sees the miner, hidden to other eyes. Even more, He sees the believer who illuminates the redeeming truth of "the Pearl of great price" as he faithfully bears witness to the Lord Jesus by attitude, demeanor, word, and deed.
"Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven."
Weekly Memory Verse
"Come unto Me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn of Me, for I am meek and lowly in heart, and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For My yoke is easy, and My burden is light."