I enjoy working out at our local fitness center, I've been at it for about 5 years now. In that time I've developed a few close relationships with the staff. This past week while working in the cafe I had the opportunity to pray with one of the sales guys-he's been through a lot, it was a great privilege.
Later that same week I returned to work out before heading home. (Warning: The following may not suitable for some audiences-especially ladies) One of the realities in the men's locker room is male nudity. Most guys live by the locker room code-undress, dress, don't stand around naked, don't walk the entire length of the locker room while naked and for the love of all that's good and pure-don't strike up a conversation with another dude while you are standing there in all of your glory.
Some guys break the code. Usually, it's the guys who look like Sasquatch, who are pair shaped and should never be seen naked in light of any kind. I digress....
As I was observing the code and getting dressed for my workout, a code breaking old dude struck up a conversation with me. I hurriedly laced up my shoes and adjusted my iPod, he pulled up his swim trunks and before heading to the pool he handed me a pink-worn out-mimeographed track with Jesus' picture and said...here's a track for you.
I want to affirm his efforts at evangelism. I may not agree with his approach, but I respect that he at least is seeking to share the message of the Gospel. But I didn't want any part of what he had to offer-no matter what it was he wanted to give me.
I was disgusted by what I had already seen. “Naked Old Guy” is probably a great guy-except for the code breaking part, but I didn't even want to give him a chance-I was closed to his message because I'd seen enough. It made me think of all the ways I've lived my life that have made those who have seen me “naked” want to turn away in disgust and reject the Gospel.
I think of judgmental, legalistic ways I lived life
I think of my prejudice toward those who were different than me
I think of the insensitivity I've displayed in my immaturity
I think of the brash boldness I presented as I thought I had all the answers
I think of lack of concern I showed to those in need-because I was busy with my “deal”
I think of the crappy friend I've been
Gross, Disgusting, Awful
As a fully clothed Christ follower I'm living my life “naked” before those who don't know him. My actions and attitudes are on display-even when I think they are veiled. I'm praying that my life will point people to Christ rather than cause them to turn away in disgust.