DISCLAIMER: Read this with an open mind. If I offend, I don’t really apologize. This is my opinion and I hope you respect it.
On the real…
I believe one thing a Christian should never do is get stuck in a Christian Bubble.
Don’t get me wrong, we all need encouragement and brothers and sisters we can trust and keep us accountable.
But honestly, how much of an impact can you make in the world if all you surround yourself with is what’s safe and comfortable … all the time?
1. We lose perspective on how the world REALLY is. We start to believe that everyone else is wrong for the way they live their life. Perhaps we feel uncomfortable around people who drink, smoke, do drugs, swear … my question is why?
Is it because our life is supposed to be immune to that?
Is it because all we surround ourselves with are bible-reading, prayer-filled, church-going Christians?
FACT OF THE MATTER, is the world is a RAW and REAL place, with real problems, real addictions, real trials, and REAL situations and experiences.
How much capacity of understanding and ability to help do we have if we’re uncomfortable around it?
Better yet, how much of an impact can we make IN it, if we don’t tolerate it, don’t accept it, or acknowledge it as how REAL life really is?
Not much at all.
but we CAN change it.
2. The Christian Bubble is NOT biblical.
Yes, I know. Jesus had his disciples and Paul had his as well.
But how many times were they and their disciples in the “REAL WORLD” as well?
Jesus himself had kau kau time with the tax collectors and Paul and his disciples were constantly ministering and reaching out in different cities.
They spent time doing life WITH them… not necessarily being RELIGIOUS. just being real.
Too many times we bust out the “come church” or “come small group” card.
How about come movies? come chill and play video games? come dinner? come basketball?
Too many times we do everything with our Christian friends rather than those not part of it. I believe it comes off pretty shady if someone thinks your just in it to bring them to church.
Remember, it’s not about the religion, It’s about the relationship.
And that relationship – even 2,000 years ago – wasn’t based on JUST going to church, it was about building a friendship and trust and being there for others.
If we constantly hang out with people that are part our church what kind of relationship do we have with people NOT part of them?
Is it… a “come church” relationship?
Let me tell you a story…
I bring a friend somewhere … as he smokes a cigarette someone goes “WHO IS THAT SMOKING!?”
Can you imagine how uncomfortable that made one of my BEST friends, who I pray for and believe for, feel?
We just wanted to chill.
Ask Jesus, Paul and their disciples, the REAL world and EVERYTHING about it wasn’t foreign at all. It was PART of their life.
AND THEY were a part of REAL WORLD.
And because they were, IMPACT, TRANSFORMATION, REVIVAL of the lives of whole regions were made, because they were OUT THERE on the battle field, not in the safe confines of a church.
But please go on Sundays. 🙂
3. YOU’RE NOT THE ONLY ONE WHO IMPACTS.
Sometimes WE think we are the ONLY ones who make an impact and CAN impact. We feel that we know the truth, we know what’s right, we know scriptures…
But let me say that you can’t fathom how much you can be impacted from hearing the life stories, struggles, triumphs, and downfalls from others.
I truly believe that evangelism is a two-way thing and just as much as we impact others, we get impacted just as much from them.
Hearing the lives of others – which is done by spending time with them – allows you to have perspective, it enlargens your understanding of the world and of people.
(REMEMBER: narrow-mindedness will KILL your evangelism, even before you start).
And… MOST importantly it can stir your faith.
When I hear about the ups and downs of others … it makes me want to pray more, believe more, seek more … for THEM.
It makes me want to better myself with God so I can be the best when I help them.
After all, Jesus was selfless. He put EVERYONE before himself – believer and non believer alike.
4. PAUL AND ANANIAS
In Acts 9 we see Paul – a former CHRISTIAN BASHER see his life transformed and changed because of Ananias, a believer who reached out to him.
Paul is RESPONSIBLE, for pretty much the WHOLE New Testament – while being jailed, persecuted, and arrested because of his faith along the way.
Same goes for his disciples.
This former Christian Killer BECAME a walking Juggernaut of faith because one believer – Ananias.
Was it uncomfortable for Ananais? Guaranteed.
Dangerous? Paul could have had Ananais arrested/killed if God had not intervened prior.
But MOST IMPORTANT, even beyond the danger…
Ananias was SELFLESS and God honored his faith with the New Testament.
HOW AWESOME is that. Gnarrrly I tell ya.
Ananais stepped into the battlefield for the life of a nonbeliever.
THANK YOU… and I aspire to follow in your foot steps.
You know, this isn’t supposed to sound judgmental… you all should know I’m not the one to.
But from the bottom of my heart … as IMPORTANT as it is to remain founded in relationships that’ll encourage your faith…
It’s JUST AS IMPORTANT to step out of it once in awhile,
For the sake of others and for the sake of yourself.
You are destined to be Ananias. 🙂
Who is your Paul?