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Where to Begin

In his autobiography, Pierre Loti tells how, as a small boy, reading stories of sainthood led him to aspire to become a saint. He resolved to imitate Simeon Stylites, who lived on top of a pillar and won a great reputation for sanctity. Pierre therefore mounted a high stool in the kitchen and announced his plan to remain there for forty years. His mother, however, would have none of his sanctity in the kitchen and at the end of an hour he was wistfully recording in his diary, “Thus I discovered that it is exceedingly difficult to be a saint while living with your own family.”

Those who study the Bible know that all who are born again are saints. Nevertheless, the lesson is a good one. Testimonies that move crowds and influence strangers may be very weak at home. And it is at home that the acid test of Christianity is given. It is well and good to dream of being used of God on some far-off mission field, but if one is not faithful at home he will be of little use as a missionary. Hudson Taylor said it well: “A small circle of usefulness is not to be despised. A light that does not shine beautifully around the family table at home, is not fit to rush to a long way off to do a great service elsewhere.”

How does your family regard your testimony for Christ? Are you consistent at home? Is your temper controlled by the Holy Spirit? And what about the return of Jesus? If He had come last week, would you have felt comfortable in His presence — considering your actions at home?

Begin your ministry for Christ where it’s most needed — at home!

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