What Are You Supposed to Enhance With Your Saltiness?

Daily Reflection / Produced by The High Calling
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“Salt is good for seasoning. But if it loses its flavor, how do you make it salty again? Flavorless salt is good neither for the soil nor for the manure pile. It is thrown away. Anyone with ears to hear should listen and understand!”

Luke 14:34

I want to spend one more day reflecting on Jesus’ teaching about salt. Yesterday, we saw that we are to be salty disciples, people who live distinctively because we follow our Master, Jesus.

Today, I want to highlight one implication of Jesus’ salt metaphor. It comes across more explicitly in Matthew 5:13, but it’s here in Luke 14:34-35 as well. I’m thinking about how we are to live out our saltiness, if you’ll pardon an awkward phrase. Or, to put it differently, what are we supposed to enhance with our saltiness?

Most Christians, are familiar with Matthew 5:13, “You are the salt of the world.” This verse suggests an answer: “We are to enhance the earth, the world.” But, if you look at how many of us live our lives, you might find that our saltiness is limited to our private lives, including our Christian fellowship. Now I’m quite sure that Jesus would want us to be distinctively his disciples as we relate to our family, close friends, and fellow members of the body of Christ. But I’m also quite sure that he would not limit the range of our saltiness here. On the contrary, Jesus taught that we are to be the salt “of the earth.”

What would it mean for us to enhance the earth with our saltiness? Most obviously, it would mean that the presence of Christians in the world makes life better, not just more moral, but also more flavorful, perhaps even more fun.

I remember a college tour I took a couple of years ago at a university that shall remain nameless. The tour guide was singularly unimpressive. In fact, he talked as if he had smoked pot shortly before giving the tour. For about an hour, he showed us the campus, including the place in a dorm where students had “put up a stripper pole.” Not once did he mention anything having to do with religious life on campus.

Finally, my wife asked him directly: “What options are there for religious involvement on campus?”

“Oh, nobody is required to do anything religious here,” the guide answered. Given that we were at a public university, this came as no surprise. “But there are some groups on campus,” he continued. “There’s one called . . . oh, something like Campus Crusades or something. Yeah, I don’t go to that group or anything. But sometimes they have a big festival on campus. It’s really awesome. I go to that, so those Campus Crusade people must be okay.”

I was impressed, not by my tour guide or by the university he undersold so pathetically. I was impressed by the fact that a group of faithful Christians were impacting their campus, not only by sharing the Gospel, but also by helping even my guide to have a healthy, moral good time.

QUESTIONS FOR FURTHER REFLECTION: Where has God placed you so that you might “enhance the flavor” of life? How might you do this in your workplace? your neighborhood? your school? your athletic team?

PRAYER: Dear Lord, you have placed me in my part of the world so that I might be salt right where I am. Help me, Lord, to do this. May I see opportunities to add flavor to the world around me.

Help your church to do this. We cannot flavor much of the world on our own. But when your people are salty together, the world will taste different. Teach us how we might be faithfully present as salty communities. Amen.