ACTS 16:9-15

How do you tell if someone is a worshipper of God?  Is it because they wear a cross around their neck?  Is it because they seem nicer than most other people?

I once told a friend in college how much I appreciated him because his actions reminded me of what Jesus calls us to do.  At first he didn’t like it when I said this because he didn’t like the label of “Christian” due to some of the cultural baggage he believed came with the label.  But even though he did not want to wear the name of “Christian,” he still reminded me of someone whom I would consider a “worshipper of God” because of what he said and did.

The Bible says that when Paul met a woman named Lydia in the Book of Acts he could tell that she was a “worshipper of God.” How did he know that?  We hear the description that she was a dealer in purple cloth which at the time meant she probably had some wealth.  Was she generous with that wealth and was that a sign of her belief?  Had Paul observed her interactions with others and sensed her hospitality and kindness in a way that reminded him of God’s love?

It is interesting that she is known as a “worshipper of God” before she meets Paul and hears about Jesus.  Perhaps this is a reminder that there are those people who have not yet heard the Gospel, but still have a connection to God which makes them a witness to God’s love in the world.

Have you ever known someone who did not claim to be a Christian, but seemed to be a “worshipper of God” through the way they treated others and made a positive impact in their community?  Have you ever known people who act in a Christ-like manner even though they may rarely go to church?

Are there ways we could lift up those traits within people so that they might be open to hearing the Gospel and having a conversation about the variety of ways we can follow Jesus in our lives?

-Pastor Erik Goehner