Living Counter Culturally … Only Through Christ

This life we’re called to, the transformed life of a believer, is a powerful and beautiful thing. But it can be a little scary, right? Because when we live for Christ, when we’re committed to Him, we will find ourselves in opposition to the world. And, for those of us who like everything calm and steady and for everyone to get along, choosing a life we know will lead us into conflict and make us stand out can be incredibly frightening. But here’s what I know: We are not alone! God is with us. Always.

Welcome to day 29 of STAND OUT: 7 traits of a counter cultural life. You can find every post in this series indexed here.

First off, let me just say THANK YOU for your enthusiasm for the Prayers For Girls community. Y’all, I’ve been overwhelmed by the response. As I wrote Monday, I truly believe God is raising up a generation of moms who are desperate to pray for their children and who are committed to making His Word the foundation of their prayers.  What a powerful thing it is when we pray Scripture!

This life we’re called to, the transformed life of a believer, is a powerful and beautiful thing. But it can be a little scary, right? Because when we live for Christ, when we’re committed to Him, we will find ourselves in opposition to the world. And, for those of us who like everything calm and steady and for everyone to get along, choosing a life we know will lead us into conflict and make us stand out can be incredibly frightening. But here’s what I know: We are not alone! God is with us. Always.

So, back to the conclusion of STAND OUT. Again, I’m just amazed at how this little series has become the beat of my heart. God has worked in me as I’ve written. This life we’re called to, the transformed life of a believer, is a powerful and beautiful thing. But it can be a little scary, right? Because when we live for Christ, when we’re committed to Him, we will find ourselves in opposition to the world. And, for those of us who like everything calm and steady and for everyone to get along, choosing a life we know will lead us into conflict and make us stand out can be incredibly frightening.

But here’s what I know: We are not alone! God is with us. Always.

I think we lose sight of that truth, or maybe it’s just that we don’t understand what that really means.

God is with us.

Always.

I love The Message version of John 1:14

The Word became flesh and blood, and moved into the neighborhood. We saw the glory with our own eyes, the one-of-a-kind glory, like Father, like Son. Generous inside and out, true from start to finish.

The Word, the incarnate Son of God, Immanuel — whose very name means “God WITH us” — moved into the neighborhood. The ESV says He “dwelt among us.” That word dwelt means tabernacled. As in tabernacle, the big tent of worship Moses and the Israelites constructed in the wilderness … the place where God’s Presence was settled among them. Yes, tabernacled. Jesus, the Word Made Flesh, settled among us.

We are not alone!

God is with us.

Always.

If that doesn’t give you goosebumps and chills, I don’t know what will!

Not only did Jesus move into the neighborhood, He defeated the bully.  Oh, our enemy is still strutting about trying steal and kill and destroy {John 10:10} but he’s a defeated foe. Read these beautiful words from Paul:

The sting of death is sting, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God who gives us THE VICTORY THROUGH OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST. 1 Corinthians 15:57, emphasis added

He won the victory! We can live confidently and unashamedly for Him.

Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain. 1 Corinthians 15:58

Be steadfast, immovable … in Him.

As I was writing this post, a lyric kept ringing through my head:

You are ever interceding
As the lost become the found
You can never be defeated
For You wear the victor’s crown
You are Jesus the Messiah
You’re the Hope of all the world
By Your grace I live and breathe
To worship You

I love this song by Darlene Zschech.

Jesus wears the victor’s crown. And we live and breathe and have our being in Him {Acts 17:28}. This battle we are in, it isn’t against the people who live differently than us. This isn’t about Republican v. Democrat, life v. choice, traditional marriage v. same sex marriage, public school v. homeschool … our battle isn’t against each other.  Our enemy isn’t ISIS or NARAL or the NRA. Our enemy is Satan. The same enemy that spoke to Eve in the Garden and said, “Did God really say … ”  And he continues to slither into our lives and hiss that same thing to us.  “Did God really say He’d forgive ALL your sins?” “Did God really say He has a good plan for your life?” “Did God really say He cares about you?”

 counter cultural life can only be fueled through an abiding relationship with Christ {John 15:1-11}. We can’t live with wisdom or commitment or generosity unless we’ve encountered the One who is the beginning of wisdom, who reveals true commitment, and whose life was the supreme example of generosity. There is no way for us to serve others or forgive others outside of Jesus at work in us, showing us what it means to serve with humility and to forgive even when we aren’t sure how. Only through Christ and His example of dependence on the Father can we understand the value of living in dependence on God, on others, and with the church. Certainly outside of Jesus and hope He has given us we can never truly live hope-filled lives.

A counter cultural life can only be fueled through an abiding relationship with Christ {John 15:1-11}. We can’t live with wisdom or commitment or generosity unless we’ve encountered the One who is the beginning of wisdom, who reveals true commitment, and whose life was the supreme example of generosity.  There is no way for us to serve others or forgive others outside of Jesus at work in us, showing us what it means to serve with humility and to forgive even when we aren’t sure how. Only through Christ and His example of dependence on the Father can we understand the value of living in dependence on God, on others, and with the church.  Certainly outside of Jesus and hope He has given us we can never truly live hope-filled lives.

Living counter culturally is possible ONLY through Christ.

xo,

Teri Lynne

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