Have you ever looked for secret agents?
I have heard Federal Air Marshalls randomly fly airliners as a deterrent to terrorism. When I walk on a plane, I try to spot them. Is he the man in the back wearing a company flight uniform, or the guy with the beard, wearing a Yankees cap? Or is “he” a “she” quietly knitting a blanket for her grandchild in the fire exit row?
Not all agents are secret agents. An agent is merely someone representing a higher authority. My insurance agent doesn’t wear disguises or hide from me when I walk in his office.
If you are a follower of Jesus, did you know you are His agent? Jesus’ high-level agents while He was on earth were called “apostles.” There were twelve at first, until Judas became a double-agent and betrayed His Master. The word “apostle” means “sent out one.” While we may not have the authority of the first agents Jesus recruited to lead His church, we are apostles with a small “a”. We have been sent to a lost and dying world with a glorious message of hope.
And sometimes we are secret agents.
Stick with me here. I am not suggesting we should pretend to be something we are not, then pull out our bibles and confront people when we see them sinning. Instead, I am thinking of how we find ways to bring the kingdom into a variety of settings, and adapt our message to work within the restrictions our world places on us.
One of the ladies at the store where I buy my daily caffeine is a believer. She has to be careful about talking “religion” in the workplace. But while she is taking my money, she sings a soft song of praise. She is a secret agent.
Some teachers I know encourage student-led expressions of faith. There’s no law against listening to a child when he draws a picture of a cross and talks about his love for Jesus. Listening is a form of affirmation. Teachers are secret agents.
They are everywhere. They volunteer to schedule snacks for their child’s soccer teams. They hold hands with families who are praying in a hospital waiting room. They even sit on airplanes as Air Marshall. The Lord’s agents aren’t unethical, but they are subversive. In all situations, they attempt to undermine the power of Satan by pouring the grace of the Lord Jesus into their world.
This is the time of year when students go back to school and parents fret over their welfare. If you are a parent I want to encourage you in this! God has secret agents everywhere! While it is true Satan has agents of his own, they are no match for the people of the Lord. Of Jesus, the Apostle Paul wrote, “For by him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by him and for him.” (Colossians 1:16) Jesus works through human messengers and supernatural angels. He brings His agents into our loved one’s lives overtly and covertly. He hears our prayers and works providentially in ways we cannot see.
I am also convinced God calls those of us who serve Him to be His agents, secret or otherwise. We are dispensing grace on a momentary basis. Every kind word we speak and every loving act we perform is our way of claiming kingdom authority.
Who knows? You may have unknowingly made contact with one of God’s secret agents today. At the risk of sounding mentally insane I must remind you they are everywhere. And they might be the people you least suspect!
God loves working through the people we least suspect.