This is a picture of me.
What would you do if I told you instead of being a 5'4 girl, 130 pounds, studying Journalism and English in college, that I'm really a quarterback in the NFL?
Would you believe me?
Or would you look at me and say, "There's no way she's in the NFL?"
Most likely, your response would be "There's no way she's in the NFL." because my appearance doesn't back up my statement.
Now you might not know me well.
In fact, you might not know me at all.
Based off of what little you may know about me, you can make the rational decision that me being in the NFL is a far stretch.
Besides the fact that I'm a woman (eye-roll to gender roles), to be in the NFL, there are many factors. For sake of example, practice is a big part of being apart of any sport, nonetheless, on an NFL team. NFL teams practice multiple times a week, for hours at a time. Why? To get better! But I don't go to any practice. In fact, I hardly know anything at all about football. But, I tell people I'm an NFL player because I think it sounds good.
Now you might be wondering why I'm confessing to you my biggest secret- that I'm not really an NFL player. I'm confessing this to you because so many of us claim to be NFL players when we're really not.
So many of us claim the word Christian when we don't mean it. We tattoo it on our skin, we put it in our instagram bio, we plaster it on our forehead as some sort of label. So many of us claim the word Christian, while our actions tell a completely different story.
Like I said in my latest post, simply knowing the name of the Lord does not make you a Christian.
Christianity, and faith in general, is so much more than a label. It's a lifestyle, it's a change, it's a relationship. Now I'm not here to tell you you aren't a Christian- your faith is personal, and only God knows your heart. What I'm telling you is to start acting like one.
Sure, you may be a Christian. But do you act like one? For sake of example, church is a big part of being apart of any religion, nonetheless, on an Christianity. Christians go to church multiple times a week, for hours at a time. Why? To get to know God better! But I don't go to any church. In fact, I hardly know anything at all about God. But, I tell people I'm a Christian because I think it sounds good.
You can't be a true Christian- read the word of your Father in Heaven, have him transform your life, and then have nothing change.
You can't just identity as a Christian if nothing in your life backs up that claim.
Francis of Assisi said, "It is no use walking anywhere to preach unless our walking is our preaching."
Now that may not seem too important to you.
But be careful how you're living your life, you will be the only Bible some people ever read.
You might be the only Jesus someone sees.
You may be the last person someone encounters before they take their last breath, without even knowing it.
Start being kind.
Start being loving.
Be who God called you to be.
Act how God called you to act.
Often times, when people first meet me, I leave the conversation thinking "I hope they think I'm nice" or pretty. or funny. or smart. Fill in the blank with whatever rings true for you.
Why isn't my first instinct to think "I hope they see Jesus in me?"
Research shows that up to 90 percent of adults who come to Christ do so because of a relationship with one or more Christians outside the church.
Far, far too often I see people of Christianity being hateful.
I see hating the sin, and hating the sinner.
I see Christians being cruel to one another. Being down-right mean. Being rude towards non-believers, and being rude to fellow brothers and sisters in faith.
So what does God say about that?
"My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this:
Everyone should be quick to listen,
slow to speak and slow to become angry,
because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires.
Therefore, get rid of all moral filth and evil that is so prevalent
and humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you.
Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves.
Do what it says.
Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says
is like someone who looks at his face in a mirror and,
after looking at himself,
goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like.
But whoever looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom,
and continues in it—not forgetting what they have heard,
but doing it—they will be blessed in what they do.
Those who consider themselves religious and yet do not keep a tight rein on their tongues deceive themselves,
and their religion is worthless.
Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this:
to look after orphans and widows in their distress
and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world."
Christians, we are called to be the salt and light of the earth.
We are called to be set apart.
We are not called to be Christians on Sunday at 10:30, and pragmatists every other day of the week.
Christianity is a word.
Christianity is a powerful word.
But don't leave it at just a word.
Let God's holy truths sink so far into your life that every aspect of your every day routine centers around him.
Sure, I can tell you that I'm a quarterback in the NFL. I can try and convince you all day long.
But at the end of the day, my words are meaningless without action.
Stop saying you're a Christian because it sounds good, and start acting like one.