Wednesday, October 11, 2006

How's Your Resume?

Today, as I opened up my email, I was greeted by one of those job-seeking website emails that I subscribe to. The third position down happened to be with a former employer of mine. It's a great place to work, and the job was right up my wife's alley, so I called her and told her about it. She immediately began to refine her resume, and wanted my input. I am not resume expert, as a glance at my own will reveal. But, I did a little research, and found a website that specializes in helping us common folk write killer resumes. I found out something so obvious, yet it hit me like a 2 x 4 in a tornado. A resume is really an advertisement for potential employer to see. It's like a commercial in printed form. So, to get that coveted interview, it is vital to put your best foot forward, and really sell yourself in a way that captures the prospective employer's attention in the first few seconds. This first impression can make all the difference in the world. How does one do that? The site I visited suggested focusing on the employer's needs, and using power words such as "extraordinary", "highly qualified", and such. It's about making the recruiter want to read more.

If you think about it, as born-again believers in Jesus Christ, our lives are a kind of "resume for Jesus". When people watch us, and interact with us, what they observe can either make or break our Christian testimony. People judge the greatness of the Savior by those who follow him. That's why it's vital to live our lives in front of people in a godly manner. They need to see love demonstrated. They need to see patience displayed. They need to see a changed life that is in the world, but not influenced by the world. What good is Jesus to a lost sinner if the the Christian who follows him is seen as no different?

Paul the Apostle understood that his life was to be a "resume for Jesus". He took that truth seriously, and that's why he was able to tell the Corinthian Christians to "Follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ" (1 Cor. 11:1 NIV). He wasn't living his life in such a way as to lead people into sin. That doesn't mean that we are living in sinless perfection, but that we aim to be like Christ Jesus in all that we do.

Not only did Paul have such expectations for his own life, but he expected those under his apostolic authority to be "resumes" as well. In 2 Cor. 3, he essentially told the same people he had to rebuke sharply that they were "living letters" of not only Christ and the Gospel, but of Paul and his ministry. Their lives were now showing the changes that made them more Christ-like, giving more validity to Paul's message, and his standing as Christ's chosen apostle to the non-Jewish people.

In these past few weeks, I have really been focused on what it means to be a "missional-minded", or an outward-focused Christian. Our task is not to shut ourselves away and hold out till the rapture of the Church, but to hit the harvest fields of people needing Christ and win them to him. Jesus said that we are like that city on a hill, whose lights are visible in the darkness. In the dark world that we live in, we shine our light in the way we live our lives.

"...let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven" (Mat. 5:16 NIV)

So, shine that love that God has poured into you. Shine that mercy, that compassion, that joy that endures even the hardest trials life throws at you. When the lost people of this world begin to see that there is something different in you, they are sure to ask and, maybe, just maybe, you'll harvest that soul and see them come to Christ and become a "resume for Jesus", too!

I'm off to work on my resume!


Missional Jerry said...

Your resume is your story. Your story is your message.

Your missional when you live your message.

Great Post.

ruthrap said...

great message, mp! i think we should all vamp up our resumes! we need to sell ourselves as Christ followers to all we meet. He needs to be seen in us to get the message out!

Phil Hoover, Chicago said...

great post....I need to work on my resume...