I Peter 3:15: “but sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts, always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you, yet with gentleness and reverence.” NASB
That verse is a good justification of our responsibility to witness. We shouldn’t try to “preach” to our friends and relatives. We just need to speak of our experience.
Sometimes, our witness doesn’t even need to be said in words. Saint Francis of Assisi is thought to have said, “Witness for Christ each day, and if necessary use words.”
Our son-in-law, Tom Long, is a good example of that. Tom is a witness for Christ in his everyday work. He does speak up for Jesus when it is appropriate. But, the way he interacts with his customers, his employees and his suppliers is a strong witness of his faith. Tom is very ethical in his dealings. He tells everybody working on his site that he doesn’t want to hear any crude or profane language. He has the reputation for being a “good guy”. He is not reluctant to give an account of the hope that is within him. When necessary, he even uses words.
I have heard that “your actions speak so loud that I can’t hear what you’re saying.” I wonder often about the kind of witness I am giving when I rush to get in front of somebody at the check-out line; or when I join in the conversation to gossip about an acquaintance. Witnessing is not always telling a person about the “plan of salvation”. We are a witness (good or bad) for our Lord in everything we do or say.
Remember, the children’s chorus,” Oh, be careful little hands what you do, For the Father up above is looking down in love?” It is not just the Father who is watching. Our family, our friends, and the world around us is watching to see what we do and say.
My prayer is that I will be careful about my witness every hour, every day.