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25th June 2024


Fit in but Stand Out

The call upon the Christian is to live distinctively for the Lord – in God’s world, God’s way.
We are to be salt (purifying) & light (illuminating) in this world (Matthew 5:13-16). To be holy as the Lord is holy (1 Peter 1:15).
The challenge is to do that faithfully & consistently in the constant battle against the world the flesh & the devil (Ephesians 2:1-3).
These are 3 elements that daily fight against us as we seek to walk in God’s will, word & ways.
The differing ways that Christians have sought to live faithfully for the Lord in this world will be the theme for this TFD series.


But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvellous light; 1 Peter 2:9 NKJV


Christians live in this world but in reality they are citizens of heaven (Philippians 3:20).
Believers are therefore in the world but not truly of it (John17:9-19). They are called to live distinctively for the Lord.
We are saved from this world but we remain here for this world. Sent out to make disciples of the nations (Matthew 28:18-20).
The challenge we constantly face is to fit in whilst at the same time standing out!! SELAH.
It is a task that requires considerable courage, compassion, wisdom & discernment.

When seeking to navigate through this rapidly changing world we need great wisdom & sound
Discernment.
In responding to the values & the ideologies of contemporary society there are differing positions that Christians can adopt:

  • Defence (we must protect the truth at all costs)
  • Relevance (we must engage)
  • Purity (we must not get corrupted)
  • Faithful Presence (incarnation)

We will explore them in more detail over the coming days as each has value when living in a hostile host empire which this world is.
My suggestion is that faithful presence through incarnational ministry & mission is truest to the way of Christ.
It incorporates all the tenets of the other positions & still demonstrates the uniqueness & truth of Christ.
In it through sound wisdom & sensitivity Christ can be made known & His truth proclaimed with compassion & love.
You are in the world but not of it. Here to fit in & at the same time stand out. SELAH
Through the equipping & empowering of the Word & Spirit that is exactly what God has planned & purposed for you.
You are SENT to this world in the power of the Spirit by the Father & the Son. Hallelujah!!

For Reflection

  • In what ways am I living in a distinctive manner as a Christian?
  • Which of the 4 positions mentioned above do I most readily resonate with? Why?
  • Meditate upon how we are called to fit in but stand out in this world.

A song related to this theme:


Prayer

Heavenly Father,
Thank you that You have saved me from this world through Your Son,
And that in the power of Your Spirit You send me to this world.
Jesus, radiate Your love, life & light through my life,
Teach me to walk faithfully & consistently in all Your ways.
Holy Spirit give me wisdom & discernment to fit in but stand out,
Living clearly & distinctively for the Lord as a bold worshipper & witness.
This I ask in the mighty Name of Jesus.
Amen

Written by Gareth Jones

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