I have a lot of pet peeves, but this one in particular. I really hate it when people claim they have God, but their lifestyle could not prove that to be more wrong. It really upsets me because I feel like that isn't fair to the people who truly want to live for Him.
This generation has forgotten what it means to show faith. You can say you are a Christian, you can put God comes first in your Instagram bios with the occasional God repost image, but it means nothing if you choose to have God on the side of your life and not in control.
In this post, I'm going to talk about why that upsets me, why you should be bold, some reasons why people don't want to be, and then some steps you can take to be bold in your faith.
Why this upsets me:
First of all, like I said earlier - it's not fair to those people who really do have God. Why? Because you're setting a bad example! You're saying as long as you say you have God, you're good to go (you're not, I'm just gonna get that out there). You could also possibly be saying that if you say you have God you can do whatever you want and so on.
You guys, having a relationship with God is just that. You can't just say you have Him and never ever spend time with Him. Going to church doesn't make you have a relationship with Him - neither does just reposting those I love God images. No. Everybody knows you have to WORK at relationships. You have to choose Him over and over. You have to choose to still talk and spend time with Him when everything is going well. You have to choose to trust Him in the dark times. That's why so many people reject Him - they are too arrogant and lazy for Him, which oh my gosh, I don't know why after all He's done for you, but that's for another day.
Most importantly, you have to choose to live for Him. It's gonna be really hard, especially if you go to a public school or job where religion is dismissed, and you're working with all sorts of people: atheists, the fake Christians, the arrogant ones, the popular ones, and so on. I'm going to be blunt: you're probably not going to be popular if you are really truly being a light for Him. At least, not popular to world. And that is okay. That popularity is not the kind you want - it's of this world, it's shallow, it's stupid, it's just going to hurt you. Don't fit in to be popular. That is the worst decision you will ever make. No. Be the light, and be you. Sure, I may not have two hundred plus Insta followers, I may not be tagged in anyone's "thanks for making my year great" posts, but I honestly don't care.
I work hard at my goals, and I work hard at my relationship with God, and I am myself, and if that's not exactly "in" right now, I do not care. Choosing God is the best decision ever because I can see Him helping me and what He is doing in my life. I can see how it's paying off, and it just works. I want everyone to experience that.
Why you should be bold:
Because people notice how you act even if you're not popular, and they learn from you. They see you. They will see your authentic joy and your confidence, and they will long for that because God created us with that longing. Everyone has that, some just choose to bury it because they don't want to accept it. Keep being a light, don't force it into people - be a street light. The littlest light will overcome darkness. How dark would the streets be if one of the lights went out?
That, and it will benefit YOU. God wants a relationship with you for a reason! He loves you so much, that's why He sent Jesus. He wants to help you in your dreams, He wants to comfort you, He wants to give you hope. He will never leave you, all you have to do is trust Him and know His Son and Him and know that you are nothing without Him. Because you aren't. Without God, what the heck is this life? It's so pointless otherwise, and I don't believe life is an accident.
Some reasons why people don't want to be:
I feel like there's two main reasons, the first is pride. You don't want to bow down to a God. You don't want to believe in Him unless you have solid evidence. Bill Nye said something about if he'd just have some sort of a certain evidence he'd change immediately. It's just not that simple though. Let's say he did get that evidence he wanted - then what? It's not faith anymore is it? And the Bible specifically says, "Blessed are those who have not yet seen and still believe." A book over science and God said if we had so much of evidence of God, it wouldn't be faith - it would be knowledge. That is not what we are called to do. And it's not like there's no evidence. "A lack of evidence" will lead us to our next reason.
Laziness. A laziness of commitment, a laziness of not wanting to know God, a laziness of doing the right thing, and so on. "A lack of evidence" is a cover up for people who are too prideful to surrender their control to God and people who are too lazy to live the lifestyle God calls us to. You want to know how I know that?
Because if they really, TRULY felt like it was a lack of evidence, they better be getting their butts looking into it. It's one thing if you do a ton of research (and obviously you can't just look at stuff ONLY atheists say, unless you're comparing it with a Christian view too) and still don't believe, but I don't think that will be the case if you're looking hard enough. If you "don't want to" look into that stuff, then it's pride or laziness. I'm sorry, but it is - because you're afraid what you read might be true.
You guys, having a relationship with God will require effort, but it is so worth it! Maybe for you it's because you have a sin you don't want to give up. I know that happens, but really, when you listen to what God says is good, it really does change you for the better. Sometimes at first I've found myself hating to do the right thing, but as I look back, I see that it is always worth it.
Maybe it's because you don't want to commit to loving God, but it's really simple. All you have to do is pray and know Him! I would totally recommend reading devotionals and getting involved in church, but that's not required to love Him. Hopefully though, as you know Him more, you will want to do those things. But really, a relationship with Him is personal, and there is no right or wrong as long as you obey His word and talk to Him. A quote I love said, "The only way to mess up praying is by not doing it."
So just take that step. You don't have to have everything figured out, God will help you.
So, ready to be bold? Try some of these steps:
Use your talents for God, and start pursuing them NOW! Talk to your parents or an adult about some things you could do. You're not too young to start - on some levels. If you want to be a semi truck driver, well, yeah. Don't start driving yet. When you pursue your talents and show them to people whether that be social media or whatever, people notice that, and they're going to admire you for that - especially when they see you giving the glory to God.
Show your love of God by how you ACT. Be kind to everyone, no matter who's group they're in or what they do. Have a good attitude about life, and share it with people. Rise above drama - stay away from the dating crap, use social media for God's glory, put an end to gossip, and be a leader. You may not be popular in school, your friends might not get it, but they will one day. God will see that, and He will reward you by opening doors no man can shut.
The bottom line:
If you say you have faith, SHOW IT. It means nothing if you don't put it into action. Be bold. Take risks. I know what it's like to feel uncomfortable in school about my faith - I still take those risks, and there hasn't been one I regretted. If you're not sure where to start but want to, tell me and don't be afraid! You can comment on this post, or if you want to keep it private, DM me on Instagram (@sparklesbyashlee) or Twitter (@ashleesparkled), or chat me on Snapchat (maemaeash), and I would be more than happy to help you out.
Thank you all for reading - remember to be bold in your faith. You won't regret it, and this world needs it now more than ever.