As Christians, we were made to stand out from the rest of the world in our ways. However, in this day and age, the American culture has blended into Christianity and stretched the beliefs to fit in. Modesty, purity, language, humility, and many other virtues have been left behind as Christians begin to embrace the religion of the 21st century. Over the years, swearing has become more acceptable in our culture, TV shows have become more inappropriate with an even younger crowd, sex has lost its meaning, marriage has lost value, and laziness and greed have captured the hearts of many Christians. In biblical times, God would have wiped out the whole nation if He saw such sin taking over His creation. For example, in the story of Noah and the ark that’s just what He did. But God saw how Noah stood out from the rest of people and chose him to lead His new world. Would we have been left behind?
One of the problems is that we are comparing ourselves to other people and not to Jesus. Compared to the world, we might use better language, or gossip less than the average person, but if God set us apart and looked at our hearts individually, He would still see the words that dwell in our thoughts, or the anger that takes over our mouth, and the gossip we are guilty of. God isn’t calling us to be nicer than a coworker or not be as impatient as a neighbor, He is calling us to be like Him. He even gives us a whole book to turn to so that His word is clear! Instead of turning on the TV and thinking, “At least I don’t watch the show she watches,” think, “If Jesus were sitting right next to me, would I be watching this?” As the world is constantly changing, God’s truth and wisdom remain the same, so it is Him that we should look to.
When a person accepts Christ into their life, the Holy Spirit comes and exposes the dirty parts of their heart. With the Holy Spirit we can understand how we have strayed from God so that we can begin to chisel off the parts of us that are unlike Him. Our actions and God-driven choices are what visibly separate us from people who don’t know Jesus. But how can we stand out if the world has control over our conscience?
God created everyone of us to shine His light in everything we do. We are supposed to be the changers, not the ones being changed. In Francis Chan’s words- be transformers, not conformers. Romans 12:2 “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.”
Challenge: Ask God to reveal how you let the world conform you and let Him work in you to change that. Compare yourself to Jesus, not others
Sources: Romans 12:2, Genesis 6-7
Just for Inspiration: The world says let people marry people of the same gender as long as they are happy, but God says “I created man for woman and woman for man.” The world says you need a boyfriend or girlfriend to be happy, but God says “There is joy in the Lord.” The world says you’re ugly without certain products or diets, but God says “You were created in the likeness of God.” The world says it”s good to be diverse in religion and let everyone have their own beliefs, but Jesus Christ says “I am the Way, the Truth and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.”