Monday, May 9, 2016

Revelation // A Devotional

The Lord has been placing something heavy on my heart recently and it is somewhat profound, you might say. It is this:

The world is lost.

I know that's such a huge revelation for you to read, right? As believers, though, I think we lose sight of this, expecting the world to act like us and, in turn, we begin to act like the world. The lines in the sand have gotten blurred and when I am pressing God on this subject, I feel this whisper over and over again: the world is lost.

When I first got out of school and took my first design job in Dallas, I encountered all sorts of lifestyles that I hadn't been surrounded by before up close and personal. I was in conversation with a minister from our church and the subject came up about loving the sinner + hating the sin... the hardest kind of balance there is, in my opinion. I loved the people around me but couldn't reconcile that with the stuff they'd talk about on Monday morning and so on. I was young, naive and sheltered. He said something that has stuck with me for 10+ years. He said, "Becky, they're just lost people acting lost."


It is so simple, yet for me, so profound. That revelation changed my perspective that day. It changed my heart toward the world. It changed my heart toward sin. It changed my heart toward people. And somehow I felt like, with that perspective, I began to view people - especially unbelievers - the way that Jesus might have viewed them. With tons of love, compassion and grace. They are a part of the world. And with that, I had this revelation:

The world is lost. But I am not. 

Being in the political arena (by proxy, I might add), there is a lot of pressure to either make people happy or stand up for what you believe in. There are not a lot of people who try, or even want, to do both. For my sweet husband though, as much as he stands on conviction and principle, it is important to him (and me) that his words - his statements - be seasoned with grace AND Truth, not just one or the other. Yall, that is so much easier said than done.

During a conversation we were having last week about an issue that is arising, God continued to press this idea into me over and over again. The world is lost, Becky. And as I seek this out in scripture, I continually read that they - the world - will think us to be foolish. No matter how loving our words are, no matter how convicted and gracious and kind believers are with our words, if they are not watered down... if they are, in fact, capital T Truth statements, the world will not get it. It's biblical, y'all. 

Last week I saw on the first hour of the Today Show - maybe even the first 30 minutes - that Kirk Cameron is under fire for remarks he has made "on" women while promoting a marriage conference. This is his quote:

"Wives are to honor and respect and follow their husband's lead, not to tell their husband how he ought to be a better husband. When each person gets their part right, regardless of how their spouse is treating them, there is hope for real change in their marriage."
Y'all, that is directly from scripture. There is no other way to say it. You wouldn't believe some of the things people are saying about him. He is sexist, hates women, old fashioned, bible beater, advocate against women, etc. Have you seen Kirk Cameron talk? EVERYTHING he does and every word that he says is laced with love and a genuine smile. I dare you to go watch him talk about marriage or Christ and find him being mean-spirited or hateful.

But the world doesn't see anything the same way that we do. Our worldview is - and should be - different, y'all. It cannot be the same. And if it is the same, then maybe we should do some digging around in the Bible to make sure our convictions are rooted in scripture and not the world.

It is easy for life to get messy and the lines to get gray because that is Satan's goal. He accuses when we stand up for something, saying we are being offensive, intolerant or mean. Well, no one wants to be that so we back off. He desensitizes us to sin through the television shows that we watch and the music that we listen to. (All of my favorites are in this category - hello Bravo + Nashville!) Satan tells us that the blatant sin of others has nothing to do with us so we should not worry about it... until it starts to effects us and by then, it's too late to do anything. We've dug our own hole and now we're living in it.

So, the question today is twofold.

First, what is your worldview? Do you know what you believe and why you believe it? Are you rooted in black + white conviction or are you rooted in that gray area that maybe what's right for you isn't right for everyone? There are those areas, Paul says so in Romans. But more often than not, y'all, scripture is black and white.

Second, how does your worldview effect the world around you? Is it being talked about in your home with (or in front of) your children? Do your closest friends know where you stand or even what you're wrestling with? Have there ever been times where you've had to close your eyes when you say what you truly believe out loud because you think it might offend someone? Are you acting on your conviction?

Our responsibility as believers is to God and God alone. The fact that our conversations should be laced with love and seasoned with grace is between us and the Lord. How the people receive the words is not up to us, and even then, we should expect that they won't understand. And if they do get it, or when they ask to hear more about why, we are then presented with an opportunity to share where our conviction comes from... Jesus. And that is the whole point.

Disclaimer: I am not, by any means, suggesting to post your "convictions" to social media. Actually, please do not do that. I am merely suggesting that our worldview should be one of conviction, one that is different from the world and one that changes - or tries to change - the world around us. 

"Let your speech always be with grace, as though seasoned with salt, so that you will know how you should respond to each person." Colossians 4:6
"If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first. If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you." John 15:18-19

"For the wisdom of this world is foolishness before God..." 1 Corinthians 3:19

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