What goes in a trophy case of faith?

Blog, faith

Show off your trophies with pride! We all have a version of our own personal trophy case. Maybe for you it’s real trophies from sports accomplishments in high school. Or perhaps your trophy case consists of memorabilia from trips and vacations you’ve taken in the past.

People use many different ways to show off their accomplishments.

I’m using the word trophy to refer to the accomplishments or events in life in which we take greatest pride. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with putting those on display for everyone to see. 

Whatever is of most importance to you should be the centerpiece of your trophy case. Fill that trophy case up, and show it off with great pride.

However, did you realize that what you believe is also showcased for the world to see? We all have a “trophy case” to show off our faith.  Even free thinkers and atheists regularly like to show off their beliefs. They typically flaunt their intellect as the center piece of their trophy case.

I am becoming increasingly convinced that people live out their faith every day. The things that you believe show up in the way that you behave. There is no way to separate these two things consistently. Therefore, your actions become the trophy case of your faith. What you behave IS what you believe.

In the next few paragraphs, I’m going to try to convince you that you behave your faith in public regularly and that your actions are the trophy case that puts your faith on display for everyone to see.  In other words, I’m going to try to convince you of the truth of James 2:18. -Your actions are the display of your faith.  

Here are a few of the biggest trophies of your faith:

Your calendar

This one should be self-explanatory. We all make decisions about where our time goes. No one gets extra time in a day; no one, no matter how poor, gets fewer hours in a day.

Therefore, one of the most important decisions you will ever make is what you do with your limited time. This is how we put our beliefs on display. Our calendar showcases our faith. 

Men and women of faith prioritize their relationship with King Jesus. They make this the first and most important appointment on their calendar. Everything else should take second place to this. If your calendar is out of control, read this article I wrote to help you: Love the Lord your God with all your Schedule.

Your mate

Maybe this doesn’t make sense immediately. However, the person you choose to get romantically involved with says a lot about what you believe. In fact, in Nehemiah 10, Israel makes a national commitment to God. They express their commitment by stating that they won’t settle on a mate that does not share their faith. 

When you date someone who does not share your faith, you are saying to the world that your mate is more important than your faith. -that your spouse is more important than your savior! 

Don’t get romantically involved with someone who doesn’t share your faith.

In almost every case, your faith will be dragged down to their level, rather than them being pulled up to your level. Your mate is a prominent trophy on the shelf of faith. Read Nehemiah’s warning about marrying outside your faith: Nehemiah 10:28-39.

Your job

I’m not making this story up… A couple of months ago I was with a group of friends sharing our faith in Jesus on a Saturday morning. At one apartment, a woman stated that she was struggling with finances.

During the course of the conversation, she said that she felt God telling her that she needed to become a stripper to make more money. Before you shame or criticize this woman, put yourself in the shoes of somebody who is in such a rough spot that they’re willing to consider doing something immoral or illegal in order to earn more money.   

We gently, but firmly, told her that she was created in the image of God. Therefore, her body was a gift from the Lord. We encouraged her to use this gift for God’s glory rather than to make a few dollars on a Saturday night.  

I’m using this lady’s story to illustrate that your profession has a great deal to say about your passion. God’s people should be willing to give their job their best efforts. This is basic Bible teaching.

Moreover, because a Christian carries the presence of God with him or her to work, you should see your work as a form of worship. Most Americans spend many hours a week at work. The way you do your job is a powerful display of your faith. 

Your money

You knew this one was coming, right? Relax; I’m not going to ask you to give money to a church. I want to argue that money is so important in our society, that where you devote your money ultimately shows what’s important to you.

The thing that gets most of your money is what’s most important in your life! These two things go hand in glove… there is no way around it. 

It should seem a little bit crazy to people who don’t share your Christian faith that you are willing to give money to advance the good news of the Lord Jesus Christ! When Jesus has control of your soul, he also gets control of your checkbook. Therefore, the way you spend your money displays your faith in powerful ways in our society. 

Your health

I believe that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit. Therefore, we have a holy obligation to take care of this physical body that God has given us. The way that you treat your health demonstrates something about what’s important to you.

Here’s an article in which I challenged people about the way they treat or mistreat their health and fitness. (I heard more feedback from this post and the corresponding sermon than almost any message I’ve preached in 20 years!) Let’s Talk about Body Language.

Some people in our society go overboard with nutrition and fitness. They are basically obsessed with looking good in the mirror. This is a distortion of the responsibility God gave us to care for our own fitness.

However, others often neglect God’s gift of health and fitness. When people look at you, do they see someone who is taking seriously the responsibility to care for the temple of the Holy Spirit, or is the trophy of your health broken down and neglected?  

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