A couple of weeks ago I had the pleasure of speaking to someone on the phone who I had previously only known online.
I’ve gotta tell you, I was SHOCKED!
The gentleman in question is Trey Morgan (Blog | Twitter) and I should have guessed what his accent was like but to be honest, I never made the whole Texas connection and from his picture, he looks like a young, slim, handsome man who I imagined sounded a little like Ralph Fiennes or, at a stretch, Tom Cruise.
The voice I heard on the phone though made me picture Boss Hogg from the Dukes of Hazzard or a fat, balding, hell fire and brimstone preacher.
My preconceptions about what he should sound like and my preconceptions of what someone with his accent should look like were totally and utterly wrong.
It occurred to me today that the same is true for the preconceptions non-Christians have of us as Christians and of our churches.
People very often have very negative preconceptions of how Christians will act and speak and how their church services will be.
Do we meet those negative preconceptions? Are we everything that people fear we will be.
Or do we blow those preconceptions out of the water, in a good way?
What do people see when they see you? Do they see something that they want to be a part of?
Do they ask you for an explanation for the hope that’s within you? (1Peter 3:15)
Do you life a life that’s worthy of the Gospel of Jesus Christ? (Philippians 1:27)
Next time you see someone, think about what preconceived ideas they might have and whether you want to match up to those ideas!