Regenerate. Unregenerate. He uses us all.
It is so easy to forget that God often uses non-Christians to move His kingdom project forward. It is a sad misunderstanding to assume God won’t, or can’t, use people who haven’t surrendered their life to Him. All through the scriptures are numerous examples of God using unbelievers to accomplish His great purposes. We must not forget that people such as Moses weren’t the only instruments in God’s hand; God used the Pharaohs of the world too. Furthermore, if we think evil is the only attribute God can use in pagans, then we’ve been misguided. God can use good qualities in ungodly people to accomplish His work too. One only needs to read the story of Rahab to see this play out.
The truth of the matter is we’re all made in God’s image. Yes, we’re marred by sin and the sanctifying work of the Spirit helps the regenerate to fix the brokenness, but all humans, saved or not, still carry God-like qualities deep inside.
The misguided view that God can’t use the good qualities of unbelievers for His plans could easily lead to an unhealthy us versus them mentality if we’re not careful. In reality God doesn’t side with Christians only, He sides with all humanity. Yes, of course He is on a mission to reconcile the unregenerate world back to Himself, but He can use unregenerate people and their good works to further that mission. When I realized this fact, it revolutionized the way I view the world and the way I live. I began to see non-Christians for who they are and the wonderful talents they possess, instead of merely projects to be converted. This motivated me to invite the un-churched world into our non-profit work because they too can make a lasting difference just by offering a little bit of who they are. Working with the un-churched (mainly the Fly Fishing Community) has become the heartbeat of our organization, Fly Fishing Collaborative. By God’s grace we have an overwhelming number of non-Christian collaborators, and we couldn’t do what we do without each and every one of them. We love them all.
How can we as Christian leaders in the marketplace make more room in our businesses for non-believers to join us in what God is doing? It is then, when they see the fingerprints of God in their jobs and contribute to the good God is bringing to this world, they can see God for who He is; the natural response to that is surrender and worship.
also, it just so happens, that valuing real people and creatively inviting them into the meaningful work we do for Jesus has become the greatest evangelism I have experienced in my twenty years of vocational ministry. Go figure.