I read a pretty good article today over at “The Christian Post” today, entitled, “Why Facebook (and Your Church) Might be Making You Sad”.
No, seriously. Get real.
Perhaps I should explain.
Dr. Moore makes a great point in the article. Research has shown that we human beings have a self-destructive tendency to look at all the great things people share about their lives through social media, and assume our lives simply stink in comparison. You know it’s true. It’s called vanity and jealousy, and we probably didn’t need a fancy study to know those are facts of human behavior, right?
The problem is rampant in the church. Seriously… how many Christians do you know whose lives are ostensibly perfect? Who always have a smile on their face? Who always seem to be doing just great? Who always seem to have joy? Who always seem to be blessed, and never have problems they struggle with?
You know it’s a facade, right?
But those people are just a bunch of hypocrites, right?
Well, not really. The problem lies in what we are taught to believe about Jesus. Contemporary Christianity (at least the kind that’s appealing to a wide audience) tells us that if we just follow Jesus, life will be wonderful. It tells us we can have our best lives now. It tells us that we can have success if we just give enough to the church. It tells us that God is wholly and completely love, and that He’d NEVER let bad befall us. It tells us that every problem of ours just disappears when we love Jesus.
And we wonder why so many Christians try to hold up such false images of themselves, or why so many Christians secretly suffer because their lives don’t measure up?
This kind of “Christianity” (if you can even call it that) is SIMPLY NOT BIBLICAL.
Jesus taught some very hard things:
- That we must count the cost of being one of His disciples.
- That we must be ready to follow Him even if it means we will lose friends and family.
- That we must be willing to give up money, possessions, position, pride… anything that holds us back from Him.
- That we are to love our enemies, and pray for those who persecute us.
- That we WILL have trouble in this life because of our faith in Him.
- That we are to find joy in the inevitable suffering that comes as a result, knowing that the rewards of persevering in the faith are worth it in the end.
I could go on and on, but you get the point.
We Christians gotta get real.
If we have authentic faith and trust in Jesus, our lives are ANYTHING but perfect… anything but easy.
And presenting any image other than the truth is a lie that’s leading people astray… people that need to know the hope of Jesus Christ.
So get real. Let people into your life, and help them to see the truth… that following Jesus IS hard… that trusting Him for in every need is a difficult thing… that suffering because you hold firm to what He teaches is the norm, not the exception. And show them how He’s worth it.
Because THAT, my friends, is the reality of faith in Christ.
He is worth everything that we can give to Him in this life… every ounce of obedience we can muster… because the hope He offers for eternity is infinitely better than anything we can imagine here on earth.
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