Too many thoughts, too little time.

Perception

Can you be more Christian than you think you are?

Interesting thing about having Mike stay with us…we are having some amazingly deep conversations, Brad, Mike and I.

Mike is a Christian. Loud and proud. He isn’t pushy or a jerk, but he is definitely vocal about his faith and what he believes. He does the right things. When you ask someone what it means to be a Christian, they will either tell you my dad or Mike. Depending on how their past has shaped them. Positive or negative.

I am a Christian, but, a much quieter version. You probably won’t know unless you ask me. I try to be a good person, but, I keep my motives to myself. Plus, I am not a “good” Christian. Not by the stereotype anyway. I cuss and I don’t go to church and I lived with Brad for a while before we got married. And, honestly, while I love God, I am not real pleased to associate myself with many of his followers.

Then we have Brad. Brad doesn’t know where he is right now. He was raised Christian, but he’s sorting things out for himself now. I think he’ll come back around. He isn’t an atheist. He believes in God. He just doesn’t know what to call himself, and I don’t push.

So, we were all in the car the other day, when Mike began talking about faith and religion. And, Brad kind of shut him down with a comment about not being a Christian. I replied something like “You are more Christian than you think you are, Babe.” Mike laughed and said “That isn’t possible.” And, I said “Why not? There are plenty of people who are less Christian than they think they are.” And the car got quiet. Mike finally said “Hmmm…well…I just don’t think it’s possible. I mean, if you don’t think you are a Christian, then you can’t be one.”

But, is Mike right?  If he is right, then wouldn’t it follow that if you think you are a Christian, than you must be one?

If Brad believes in God, and loves God and loves others, then why isn’t he one?

What makes someone a real follower of Christ?

This has been an enjoyable few weeks, because the three of us actually have very different opinions, and ways of going about explaining them. But, at the same time, none of us get worked up, we don’t raise our voices, we don’t personally attack each other. We just talk. And, then we go on about our day. So, I’m not asking so I can prove anything to Mike, it is just a thought question. I’m curious to know other people’s thoughts.

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Comments on: "Perception" (2)

  1. By definition, a Christian is a person who believes that Jesus is who He says He is. That He is the Son to God, who came to earth as a sinless sacrifice for us. You accept that He died for you, and therefore, at judgement, stands before God for you. That’s the basics of it. It’s not just believing in a god, but in the God who sent His son.

    Sadly, lots of people just stop at the basics. “I believe Jesus died for me” and that’s it. They don’t allow themselves to be changed by WHO Jesus actually is. You get people like your dad who use Jesus as an battering ram….who only proclaim His judgement and not His immense love. But that’s off topic…

    As for Brad…does he accept that Jesus is who He says He is? If yes, then I think he may be judging his Christianity by other Christians…and that’s never a good thing….because we all mess up. And lots of Christians do a very, very poor job of representing who Jesus is.

    And as for you….I disagree that you’re not a “good” Christian. I mean, what is that, really? The Jesus I know is the same one who ate dinners with people others ostracized. Who stood before a prostitute and saved her life before He ever made a comment about her “sin”. Who fed, healed, and met people’s needs before He preached to them. Who promised the joys of Heaven to a man who was dying on a cross beside Him. The Jesus I know is real, raw, kind, and took a lot of beatings from people who claimed to be the leaders in the church at the time. I can see a lot of you in that description.

    • Thanks Jay. See, Brad DOES believe the things you said. He was just raised that being a Christian means you follow ALL these rules, (whether they are Biblical or not) and then you are holier than everyone else. He isn’t following these random rules anymore, so, he feels like he’s failing? Christianity was about the rules, not the relationship. I think he feels a bit lost without the rules, if that makes sense.

      As for me? I just meant I come up short compared to all the people who loudly proclaim their righteousness. I think I’m doing all right, I think I could do better, but I’m getting there. I have been surrounded by people who follow a lot more rules than I do, and tell you all about how THIS is the only right way. I don’t think so. The Bible is a pretty big book. Seems like SOMEWHERE in there some things could have been addressed. Whether that is not eating sugar, or not playing competitive sports or not dying your hair. All things I’ve heard God doesn’t like.

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