19 Behaviors of Being Salt & Light

Written by on July 25, 2022

When writing to suffering Christians in the 1st century, Pastor Peter writes to them:

“Now, who will want to harm you if you are eager to do good? But even if you suffer for doing what is right, God will reward you for it. So don’t worry or be afraid of their threats. Instead, you must worship Christ as Lord of your life. And if someone asks about your hope as a believer, always be ready to explain it. But do this in a gentle and respectful way. Keep your conscience clear. Then if people speak against you, they will be ashamed when they see what a good life you live because you belong to Christ.”

1 Peter 3:13–16 (NLT)

Interesting encouragements to those who are suffering aren’t they? You would expect things like, “it will be ok”, “stay strong”, “God is faithful,” but “always be ready to explain your hope”? Peter is saying stop thinking of yourself and be open to serve the watching world! The world IS watching!

So why would a watching world ask you about your hope when you’re under great pain, sorrow, and suffering? What would provoke the question? Your life! As you abide in Christ, you are different in your lifestyle. You don’t live like the world, period. Your influence in this world is directly related to your abiding obedience.

The real question you must consider is, “when was the last time, especially in the last 12 months, someone asked you about your hope?” Because if they haven’t, have you been living in such a way where your hope can be seen? Or you have become a political advocate, spouting opinions and not the love of Jesus?

Let’s consider what living as salt and light look like. What does a believer do that makes her so different from the world? Consider a few things:

  1. We inconvenience ourselves for the sake of others.

  2. We sacrifice without hoping to gain anything personally.

  3. We offer tangible help to those who are in need–which could be money, shelter, clothing, or transportation–while expecting nothing in return.

  4. We offer everyday kindness by just plain being nice.

  5. We go the extra mile with someone that we know will not make it to where they need to be without someone to push them.

  6. We pray for those who treat us like enemies and we seek to bless them.

  7. We make other people’s problems our problems by getting involved and investing in their lives.

  8. We humble ourselves in front of others and build them up.

  9. We have integrity–standing for what is right, whether it’s popular or not–without regard for politics, popular culture, or social shaming,

  10. We pay our bills and don’t look for ways out of it even when it’s very difficult.

  11. We don’t kick people who are down.

  12. We don’t label people so that we don’t need to love them anymore.

  13. We aren’t prejudiced against anyone different than us.

  14. We don’t participate in gossip or slander or name calling.

  15. We don’t tear someone down behind their back.

  16. We don’t retaliate when wronged.

  17. We don’t carry grudges.

  18. We don’t blame the world and everyone else for our own faults, failures, and missteps.

  19. We don’t expect others to carry the burdens we carry.

These are things that we do, or at least should be doing, as believers. These behaviors and more make us stand out from those who are not followers of Christ. They provoke intriguing questions. When the watching world sees these types of things in us they are naturally drawn to ask, “What’s the deal with you guys?” What’s the hope that you’re holding onto?

Jesus taught us to be the salt and light in a very tasteless and dark world.

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