Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Religious Fanatic

Let me tell you a sort of funny little story. I have a distant family member who used to date the ex brother-in-law of a lady I worked with...have I lost you yet?!?!?!
Anyway....the lady I worked with told my family member that she worked with me....here was her response,
"Oh, don't tell her anything you know about me because she's from the "religious" side of the family"!
I just horse laughed!!!

But..sometimes when you try to live a life for Christ that's how you get labeled.
I don't want a label of being "religious"....I can be religious about anything...watching TV, eating certain foods, playing/working on the computer, washing your car, cleaning house, working lots of hours, etc.

Here's a definition of religious:
relating to or manifesting faithful devotion

See what I mean???....."faithful devotion"....we can be devoted to a lot of things...even going to church....but does even attending church faithfully make us a Christian, if we haven't accepted Jesus into our hearts???
No, it doesn't.

It's probably not a bad thing to be labeled as "religious"...but I would much rather be labeled as a Christian. In the case of this family member in the story I told you above.....they put that label on me because they knew I went to church and tried to live right...but, even trying to live right does not make me a Christian. This is what scripture has to say about us trying to live right...about our "righteousness"....

Isaiah 64:6 (NLT)
We are all infected and impure with sin.
When we display our righteous deeds,

they are nothing but filthy rags.

Like autumn leaves, we wither and fall,

and our sins sweep us away like the wind.
This reminds me of the Pharisee and the publican:
Luke 18:10-14 (KJV)
Two men went up into the temple to pray; the one a Pharisee, and the other a publican. The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, God, I thank thee, that I am not as other men are, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this publican. I fast twice in the week, I give tithes of all that I possess. And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner. I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other: for every one that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted.
The Pharisee wanted to be seen, even in his praying....to me he was "religious"...but, the publican, on the other hand, showed humility, which prompted Jesus response:

I tell you, this sinner, not the Pharisee, returned home justified before God.
For those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.” (NLT)
So....I don't want to be considered a religious fanatic!!
But, I definitely want others to see Christ in me....
and if I get a reputation for that....
then I won't mind that at all!!!

In His Love...and with mine!!!

1 comment:

Kind words are like honey—
sweet to the soul and healthy for the body.
Proverbs 16:24