I am a Christian
As I think of the tragedy that occurred in Oregon just a few days ago, my heart aches for the parents, family members, and friends of the victims. The fact that Christians were targeted while sad isn’t so surprising considering the way things have been going in our land. As the contempt of Christianity rises, the answers are not more gun control or laws… so what are the answers to the hatred, the violence, and the intolerance against Christians? To love like Jesus. To live like Jesus. To become more like Jesus.
I love the movement across the land to stand and unashamedly proclaim- #IamaChristian! Yet I wonder… are these just words or are they backed up by actions? Are these acclamations like the pictures of Jesus that float around on social media on which are written something like: share or like if you love Jesus, scroll on if you don’t. Really? I shake my head at the shallowness of such posts. If all I had to do was click ‘like’ on a picture of Jesus to demonstrate my love for him, my life would be so much easier!
Yet Jesus’ own words point to a deeper commitment level that fb posts as he told his followers-
“Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me.” Luke 9:23
Loving Jesus means denying myself the revenge I would rather take and giving forgiveness instead. Loving Jesus means offering kindness to all I come in contact with today- even the rude & mouthy teen likely to cross my path at school. Loving Jesus means being a servant to all. Loving Jesus means building the discipline and making the time in my schedule to read his Word and bend the knee in prayer.
Loving Jesus means so much more than liking a picture on fb or tweeting out a hashtag. I’m sure many godly men and women are involved in this recent national trend to stand for Christ in social media and isn’t my place to say who lives it and who just says it… I know that… it’s not the purpose of this blog today… My purpose is to challenge myself and my brothers and sisters in Christ with the words of Joshua so many years ago.
Joshua was nearing the end of his life so he gathered the Hebrews together, reminded them of all God had done for them, and then he warned them about the dangers of turning from God to run after the pagan gods of the people around them. Then he left them with a challenge that should speak to us every day of our lives as Christians-
“If serving the Lord seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve… but as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord.” Joshua 24:15
Living for Christ is not easy and we must often battle against ourselves so we must decide… is it worth it? I can only answer for myself with a huge- YES! Never have I known more joy, peace, love, grace, mercy, purpose, and rest as when I am walking with my Jesus!
Am I perfect in this walk? NO way! But that doesn’t stop me from trying my best and making the decision each day to follow God. So today I proudly tweet #IamaChristian and pray that God will make me more Christ-like in my actions and love for others.
Lord, may my walk with you reflect the hashtag! Amen