Christian schools have a bubble. Believe it. Ever heard of “Ring by Spring?” How about your parking ticket payment referred to as the “wages of sin?” Or my personal favorite, “So you’re here to get a degree, but you could always minor in MRS.”
No thanks, I’ll just take the BS before moving on to a PhD. No MRS required.
But I digress because the point of this is- the bubble is real!
For a freshman straight out of public school, having self-professing Christian classmates was wonderful and the bubble where I spent those formative college years helped me develop character and integrity. However, I knew it wasn’t what the real world felt like. I’ve spent the past two years wondering if when I got out, I would have the grounded foundation needed to hack it in the real world. Wondering what it would feel like to live out of the bubble.
Wondering if I could truly live sold-out for Christ.
Now that I’ve escaped the bubble, I’ve become hyperaware of what my actions and words say. It was all fine and good to let that biting sarcastic comment out with friends who would never doubt the love I have for them. It was all fun and games to joke about getting smashed on weekends until that became a legit option.
Everything from my political opinions, how I respond to disappointment, my demeanor in class, to my outfit choice when I got out on the weekends needs to be filtered before I let it out.
I filter my words and actions not because I care what people think about me, but because I care what they think of my Savior.
You see, I’m a good person by most people’s standards. Not much sets me apart from other good people who aren’t living sold-out. Good deeds and kind words are things any average person can do because there are many “good people.” We are called to go beyond that and stand out because of our faith.
Good question. I really don’t have an answer, but I do know the first action towards getting there is to recognize my flawed human nature and trust in the Helper that Jesus sent to me- The Holy Spirit.
Jesus says in John 14:25, “The Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you.”
Very explicitly, Jesus says the Holy Spirit is here to remind us, to help us live-sold out. The reason the Holy Spirit is with us 24/7 is because living life in this manner is hard! It demands all of you.
Literally Every Single Part of You.
2 Corinthians 5:17 says, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come!”
Nothing can be held back because that is what you promised Christ when you accepted His gift of salvation. Give it all up now to gain a treasure in heaven that will never pass away or be destroyed.
Living in surrender to the Holy Spirit is such a mind-blowing concept because how on earth can I filter every thought or intention by the Him before it flies off my tongue? I’m only human. I sin. I mess up.
I don’t completely know how to do this. But as I’ve immersed myself more into the nature of God, His nature is slowly becoming more ingrained as my nature. For example, I no longer bite my tongue as often to curb my sarcasm; it has simply ceased to be my instinctive go-to reaction.
“Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about such things.” (Philippians 4:8)
I know, much easier said than done, but let me tell you, it’s even easier done with the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.
Romans 12:2 says, “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.”
This filter thing takes practice. It takes training your mind and body to behave to a heavenly standard, not an earthly one. It’s seeing the results of your actions on God’s terms, not yours.
It’s living a sold-out life for God.
The Road Goes Ever On,