Something has really been on my heart lately. I have been thinking about faith, Christianity, religion, and the church. Honestly, I think we are missing something. Where is Jesus? So much of our lives- that is those that confess to believe in Christ and therefore call themselves Christians- are not consumed by Christ. I write this with an extremely heavy and convicted heart.
You see the thing is that if we truly have become believers and that if we truly are Christlike, then that means something very simple -not necessarily easy- we are to be like Jesus, in word and deed. I write all of this with a very heavy heart knowing that I am guilty of not having Jesus at the center of my life, at least not always. I am guilty of being selfish, vain, proud, judging, but also lacking in faith, trust, commitment, and discipline in my walk with Jesus. I have heard fellow Christians talk about church and how it has to be done one way to be right, or its wrong if this happens. I have heard judgment from one church to another. Then I remember…the Church is comprised of imperfect people that have all supposedly encountered Christ. I am not saying that in judgment, I am saying that because the Church is where Christians should be found.
What I have been pondering lately are these two questions: What does it really look like to encounter Christ? If I have encountered him, what does that mean for me? As I write these questions I am reminded of my reasoning for having them. I struggle with the things I listed above. I am terribly imperfect, yet I strive to become more like Christ in spite of my failings. This I know- I have met Christ because I am most certainly not who I was. Though I still struggle, I am new, and made new every day. However something greatly bothers me. As the Church- but more as believers on the individual scale- should not we each encounter Christ personally and let him change us? Renew us? Strengthen us? Purify us?
I am exhausted. Not physically, not mentally, not emotionally, but communally. I am exhausted by being around believers, Christians that say that have encountered Christ yet their words are nothing but gossip, lies, slander, hatred, judgment. I am exhausted by the coarse joking and profanity from Christians. Should not our lips speak love and uplift? Should not our conversations speak life instead of death? I am exhausted from the lack of separation from things that are unfitting for Christians. Should we not strive for purity and holiness? I am exhausted from the vanity, pride, and arrogance from Christians. Should we not build God’s kingdom instead of our own? I understand that I am responsible for this just the same. I have to take responsibility for my own actions, words, and behaviors. But I want to let Christ renew me and remake me. I want to let him change my heart and purify my mind. If then we have encountered Christ, then he will work in our lives completely. If then we have encountered Christ, it will affect our churches and families. Compassion, love, kindness, gentleness, self-control, purity, integrity, and holiness are just some of the attributes that we should have once we have encountered Jesus. We may be works in progress but will be progressing…toward becoming more like Christ every day.
5 thoughts on “Have we not changed at all?”
Good word Mandy… We have to remember that we live in an imperfect world. And that isn’t going to change. I think the number one thing we can do is to start fixing the problem inside of ourselves. And of course, that never stops. There is always more growth to be had. Mandy keep being that person who encourages the Christians around you to aim for more. Not by scolding or telling them they are wrong. But rather as an example of Christ’s love. Keep being the leader God has called you to be. And I know you mentioned it, but start your own personal change… Change starts with one. The church doesn’t change all at once. It truly needs to start in a just one. That one spark can be the ignition of everything. Sorry for writing my own blog post here. Just wanted to encourage you and to let you know to keep doing what you are doing. God is going to use you in big ways.
Wow Cliff! Thank you so much for your comment. I really appreciate it. That message was just as much for me as anyone else. I want to always remind myself that without Christ, and him changing me, I am nothing.
I agree with everything you said in this post and it’s so true! I can relate!
Mandy, as I read your blog. I was reflexing on GOD’s LOVE. Your dad talked about it Sunday. Today people have a hard time with LOVE. That what makes the world go round. As we hold back LOVE in our everyday living how can we experience God or even commit or except him into our hearts if we close every feeling or emotion we may encournter. I can remember when I was facing that time of difficulity in my life the one thing that I ask GOD was please don’t let my heart hate or feel I need to have or take vengences on others for what the emeny was putting me through. I felt such a liberty of freedom in my spirit that I knew victory was on its way. I was able to look beyond my pass and LOVE and TRUST GOD and to put my future in GOD’s hands. It took time but it is all coming to pass. Thank you Jesus. You must believe with all your heart, mind and soul. Love you, Renee’
Love your blog!