My daughter, who is not yet a Christian, asked me to pray that she get a job.
I told her I would do so, and was encouraged by my husband to request of God that she get a job where Christians work.
Then I started thinking: What if she gets a job where a Christian works and the Christian is like me? What if it is the kind of Christian you can share an office with for years and never know she’s a Christian! What if the only difference is that she goes to Church on Sunday, which she happened to mention but doesn’t talk about? She dresses the same worldly way as everyone else, engages in the same worldly entertainments after work, is in credit card debt the same as everybody, and complains about the boss and small annoyances in the same way as the religiously unaffiliated in the company.
And when she has health problems, or money problems, or relationship problems, this Christian in the office frets like an unbeliever, reacts like an unbeliever, medicates her fears like an unbeliever. (In 2 Kings 1, when King Ahaziah fell through the lattice in his bedroom and sent messengers to inquire of Baal-zebub as to whether he would get better, the Lord sent this message back: “Is it because there is no God in Israel that you going to inquire of Baal-zebub?”). In short, the woman’s life is almost indistinguishable from an unbeliever’s.
And on the rare occasion that coffee-break conversation turns to spiritual things, she admits she is a Christian but with such timidity, disclaimers, and apologetic demeanor that there seems to be no reason why my daughter would want it: Where is the joy? Where is the power for living and overcoming sin? Like Cat Stevens once sang: “She moves so smooth, but has no answers.”
So I am praying for the kind of Christian that the Apostle Paul asked people to pray that he would be like:
“… making supplication for all the saints, and also for me, that words may be given to me in opening my mouth boldly to proclaim the mystery of the gospel, for which I am an ambassador in chains, that I may declare it boldly, as I ought to speak” (Ephesians 6:18-20).
And I am praying to be one.