In a far more significant way, some names are recorded in the Bible. Those names are printed on vastly more important paper. Their stories chronicle the contributions specific individuals made to the progress of God’s kingdom. Their names are associated with miraculous exploits and colossal failures. They are superstars and villains whose actions have been memorialized for centuries. Since the Bible is an inspired book, inclusion of these names is significant. Following the same reasoning, the omission of names from important stories must also be significant. That leads to the seminal question that motivated me to write this book:
Why were some biblical characters unnamed, and what can we learn from their stories?
And growing out of that question, even more importantly:
How can Christians who serve in the shadows today make a significant impact?
Significance in the Shadows
Shadow Christians are people who work in dimly lit margins, in the shadows created by the spotlight shining on others. They are believers who serve quietly, often anonymously, doing the work that keeps churches, organizations, families, and communities functioning. Shadow Christians make an impact even when no one knows their names. They care for children, sponsor student events, drive elderly friends to medical appointments, prepare meals others enjoy, give money to sustain ministries, set up for meetings, and change diapers (for the very young and the very old). They take on service roles, often several levels down the organizational chart, that help churches and ministries accomplish their mission. Their service makes more visible leaders successful.
Shadow Christians are the unseen army—millions strong—who take their faith seriously, see themselves as role players in God’s grand plan, and seldom give any thought to being recognized for their service.
Iorg, Jeff. 2020. Shadow Christians: Making an Impact When No One Knows Your Name. Nashville, TN: B&H Books.