Monday, October 24, 2011

WHAT TESTIMONIAL? Tuesday 25 October

Open Heavens Devotional by Pastor E.A. Adeboye

MEMORIZE: “let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.” (Matt. 5:16).

READ: Matthew 15:13-16

Just as men assess fellow men and issue out a report of their assessment, so also does God. A testimonial is an official statement that describes an individual’s abilities, qualities and character. This could be written by one’s former employer or head of an academic institution where the individual was a student. Sometimes, an applicant for a job could get employment on the strength of his testimonial rather than his certificate.

Sometimes, a testimonial may be written in coded language so that the real message is shielded from the person it is written about, but known only to the one to whom it is addressed – such as an employer. This could be dangerous as any potential harm borne in the testimonial is completely hid from the holder. Recently, I stumbled on the testimonial that was issued to me from Ilesha Grammar School in 1960 while searching for documents I needed to apply for a visa. In it, my principal wrote that I was ‘cool, calm and collected’. That appeared to be more of a prophesy because to the best of my knowledge, I was anything but what was written of me then.

Today’s reading can be considered as the code of our testimonial. The challenge here is for us to live better, healthier and more God-glorifying lives. According to John 1:11-12, the first testimony you are expected to have is that you are a child of God. Whatever is said about you is your recommendation to the world. In those days, when employers were considering some members of the church for sensitive positions, they would come to see the late founder of the church for his recommendation about the applicants. As was his custom, my father-in-the-Lord would describe the applicant either as just a ‘Christian’ or as a child of God. If you were saved and living right, your testimonial would be that you are a child of God, while a ‘Christian’ was one whose faith did not go beyond mouth confession. Today, it is so difficult to describe the conduct of believers as a result of their double life styles. If your testimonial is to give you access to a higher spiritual or secular position today, what would be written of you? Would it be that you are just a ‘Christian’ or a child of God?

Father, grant me the grace to be a living witness of the Christian faith.
Bible in One year: Jer. 37-40