I had an interesting conversation with a teenager today. A good kid from a good family that attends a good church.
I asked him what it meant to be a Christian.
“It means you’ve accepted Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior.”
Okay, that’s a nice, correct answer. What does it mean?
“It means I’m going to heaven.”
Alright, but most people grow old and die before they go to heaven. What about between now and then? What does being a Christian mean in the here and now?
“If you pray for things, you can get stuff.”
Wow. Just… wow.
If that’s all there is I’d rather forget it.
Is that really what young people, or even most people, in churches today understand following Christ to mean?
When did Christ’s message change from giving our lives for others to having a magic genie that gives us stuff and provides a nice place to go when we die? When did the focus change from the glory of God to the satisfying of men’s petty desires?
I know that this teenager has given a very simplistic answer but I wonder how deep that kind of thinking goes. Are our churches just another instrument of a consumer society?
I wonder what kinds of answers we’d get if we asked some of the people we know what it means to be a Christian. If you’re a Christian what does it mean to you?
Posted by Rodney Olsen
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