Lent

Ash Wednesday: Do Not Sound a Trumpet Before You

Ash Wednesday: Do Not Sound a Trumpet Before You

Matthew 6:1-6, 16-21

I have never been a person who likes to be out in front of people. In college, I decided to get a speech and theater endorsement to make me more marketable as a teacher. I learned how to build sets, hang lights, set up sound systems, direct productions, and create props. I thought I was all set with just a technical theater background because that would allow me to direct school plays. However, during my senior year, one of my professors told me that I must audition and be cast in a college production before he would let me graduate. That entire process was more nerve-racking than anything else I had ever done. I much preferred the behind-the-scenes atmosphere.

I think that’s why today’s scripture speaks so strongly to me. As the Contemporary English Version writes in Matthew 6:1-5: “When you do good deeds, don’t try to show off . . . don’t blow a loud horn . . . don’t let anyone know about it . . . don’t be like those show-offs.” (Matthew 6:1-5, CEV) My relationship with God is very personal. I don’t feel the need to pat myself on the back when I do something for others or point out the ways in which I am living out my faith. I can’t separate my faith from the other parts of my make-up. It’s as much a part of me as my sense of humor and my fear of snakes. My faith is intrinsic. I know that God knows who I am and what I stand for in my heart of hearts. I don’t have to pronounce it to the world. All I have to do is live out my faith in every moment, in every interaction, and in every thought. My God will surely see how I live my life, and reward me if that is deserved. The added benefit is that as others see us live out our faith, they have something to emulate as well. And knowing that we might influence someone else to follow Jesus is its own reward. That is where the true treasure is!

Posted or updated: 3/5/2019 12:00:00 AM
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