I attend church regularly. My husband is a deacon. I host a Bible study group and read my Bible on a regular basis.
My close circle of Christian friends wear no masks. We are pretty open with each other. We often share prayer requests with one another over Facebook or e-mail.
Sometimes, my family volunteers for the Salvation Army to ring the Christmas kettle bell. We donate clothing to the homeless. We sponsor children through Compassion International and missionaries through Gospel for Asia.
Occasionally I’ll write a blog post or two about God. And even though I’m pretty nervous about it, and worried about what to say, I’m always ready to share about Jesus with anyone who asks. It rarely happens though, so I don’t really worry. The point is, I’m ready.
I’m very Christian and I think most people who know me would agree. I try my best to follow God’s law and I’m careful about what I read or watch on television. I homeschool my kids and am raising them to love God.
But there’s a problem with all this.
It’s all safe.
And I like it.
The truth is, the more I’m learning about ‘real’ Christianity, the more I realize I’m not living it.
Being a follower of Jesus in New Testament times was not an easy road to travel. Christians met in secret to avoid persecution. They prayed fervently with, and for, one another. Many of them lost their families. Many of them lost their lives.
They loved Jesus and desperately tried to get others to listen. To point them towards hope. Salvation.
In many nations today, this still holds true.
China’s secret church is booming.
India’s missionaries face fierce persecution but still plant churches every day.
I sit under my cozy warm quilt in front of the fire and fall asleep after reading a paragraph of the Bible.
I use e-mail and Facebook to correspond about prayer requests because I’m too nervous to speak to someone face-to-face and afraid to pray out loud with them.
And then I read books like Rhinestone Jesus and watch sermons by KP Yohannan and Francis Chan and something stirs in my heart.
It’s not the books or the videos that stir me – it’s because they’re speaking God’s TRUE word.
And that’s what God does. He stirs. He calls to action. He asks for ALL of us.
Do I REALLY love Jesus? Or do I love my safe brand of Christianity?
Am I REALLY prepared to die for Him? Or do I just stay in my safe little community in North America where my ‘persecution’ is people teasing me about my faith?
Is it all about Him? Or am I walking a “God bless me” kind of faith?
I’m a fake.
The question is, now that I see it, am I going to do something about it?
Or will I continue to live my ‘safe Christianity’? If it’s really Christianity at all?