Would you trust a plumber with leaky pipes at his home? A mechanic whose car is always breaking down? An accountant who has fallen behind on his bill payments? A chef who never eats his own cooking? Of course you wouldn’t. If their service isn’t good enough to work for them, then why should it work for you?

This is one of the reasons why people reject Christianity. They listen to us as we tell them about Jesus; but when they observe our lives, they see that we have the same stubbornness, petty conflicts, prejudice, gossip, resentment, self-centeredness, unhappiness, impatience, and lack of faith which they struggle with. Something doesn’t add up. Why should they want anything we have to offer? If we aren’t eating our own cooking, then no one else will.

Don’t get me wrong — telling others about Jesus is important. But it’s just as important to get alone with Christ and allow Him to speak to us. A personal relationship with Jesus will affect the other parts of our lives which influence people on a daily basis. It will cause us to feel conviction when we are going astray; and it will motivate us to keep sharing our faith when we are tired, hurt, and we feel like quitting. A relationship with Christ will feed us so that we can feed others.

Have you been so busy “seeding” that you’ve forgotten to feed yourself? Maybe the fast pace of church activities or soul-winning has caused you to slack in your Bible study and prayer time or to sleep in during church. Before you try to show others what Christianity is all about, you need to get spiritually fed first. Allow God to work in your own life, and then you will have something meaningful to share with others. Remember, the world doesn’t want what you have to offer if it isn’t working for you.

Devotional by Dr. James A. Scudder