It seems there is an ever-increasing tension between the ‘world’ and the Christian faith.
So, why am I bothering to point this out as most people probably are already aware of this anyway? Because, it is important to see and try to understand what happens – how people react, what is said – to be wise in understanding – not to ignore what is going on around.
Are we burying our heads?
My current thinking is Christians cannot bury their heads or let someone else deal with it, or ignore it now, because sooner or later its entirely possible these things will more and more directly affect every Christians life, even if they are at the moment still apparently infrequent and isolated. Negative stories in the media for example have massive long-term impact on the already eroded Christian church, and on individual Christians and on the voice that Christians have. There are good ways and bad ways of dealing with each unique situation, but overall it is better to have an understanding already of at least some of the issues rather than simply ignore everything if it doesn’t interest or directly affect us. This is not so that we worry about it, but rather so that we can be Godly-wise in a difficult world full of compromises.
How do you react?
How we react to things is just as important as what originally happened. Mistakes will always be a possibility, and some situations will appear at least not to have a perfectly right answer for man. Keeping close to God and listening to the Holy Spirit is the best course of action for Christians as they negotiate interaction with the world.
Don’t conform to the patterns of this world
Romans 12:2: Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is–his good, pleasing and perfect will.
A Christian should no longer conform to the ‘pattern of this world’ but be transformed by the renewing of the mind. As a result of this, we can spot the difference between what is in line with Gods will and what is not. It is good to remember where we’ve come from as our minds are renewed, because then we can even more spot the ‘patterns of this world’ and act and react in a Godly way – in line with Gods will, and not conforming to them any longer. Perhaps it is easier to spot something if you understand it and know what it is. You can also then distance yourself from it more easily.
See also, John 15:19 and there are other Bible verses too. A Christian is ‘set apart’ from this world, so in a way, as we continue to be transformed into the likeness of God, we can look more and more at the world from the ‘outside’ and gain a totally different perspective as a result. Add to this the fundamental shift in understanding of our own position and restored relationship with God, and the world will look a very different place. Surely, all this and so much more will cause us to interact with the world differently?