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FIRST-PERSON: Coworkers look to believers when tragic days strike

ATLANTA (BP)–Sept. 11 made a deep mark on the minds and hearts and lives of most every American, and upon the world. During those tragic moments, as news came in like an avalanche, many of God’s people were in the marketplace where God had placed them.

Many had their coworkers turn to them, because they were faithful Christians, to ask many painful questions. They knew something was wrong but could not put their finger on the magnitude of the problem. Many wanted to know just how could they deal with such a moment.

What can a Christian say or do in such times? Other times of tragedy will come in the future, though probably on a much smaller scale — but no less real.

In tragedy, our marketplace becomes the favored arena to share a Word from God. But “clichés” are not adequate, nor appropriate. An honest, transparent and faithful witness is what is needed.

Long before a tragedy strikes (often unexpected and sudden), the Christian’s life is his witness. All the truth about the love of God, the sovereignty of God and the faithfulness of God should have been lived out before our coworkers. Day after day, the presence of God must be encountered by our fellow workers through our life — the way we speak, work and relate to others.

Jesus said it is the “pure in heart who shall see God” (Matthew 5:8). Especially is this true in a tragedy. But the Christian must be consistently “pure in heart” with nothing between him and his Lord if he is to “see God” during a tragedy, and share a clear word from God to a hurting marketplace.

Then he will be able to say with David: “… I will bless the LORD who has given me counsel; my heart also instructs me in the night seasons. I have set the LORD always before me; Because He is at my right hand I shall not be moved….” (Psalm 16:7-8).
Blackaby serves as president of Henry Blackaby Ministries, on the Web at www.henryblackaby.com. His column in Baptist Press appears monthly.

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  • Henry T. Blackaby