Living out our beliefs involves stepping out in faith and living according to who we are in Christ Jesus. To do that we need to stop “faking it.” In other words, we need to live authentically.
If I say I know certain things about God’s truth in the Bible but never live that truth out in my life, I am a fake.
If my true identity is “son of the living God” and my social and professional life is like that of an unbeliever—even if I have a good reputation and morals—am I not pretending?
A picture that comes to my mind is of an eagle that falls out of its nest into a group of rabbits and grows up thinking he must hop around like all his brothers and sisters. But his real identity is found in being an eagle that can soar the winds of the sky. Even if the eagle lives and acts like a rabbit, it’s still a “fake rabbit” because eagles are meant to fly.
I think we all need to step back and ask the hard questions of ourselves sometimes, such as:
- What do I think I signed up for with Jesus now that I have some growth and maturity?
- Am I faking my true self in Christ in order to not disrupt my world with this Jesus stuff?
Satan is the master deceiver. He will always work through our culture to challenge us to play it safe with Jesus. He says to me, “John, you are a Christian, but you need to be very quiet and non-disruptive in your business and social networks about this Jesus stuff. Don’t create controversy because you may lose your peer approval.”
But even though Satan challenges me in this way, my heart will also challenge me. It often asks me, “Do you believe that Hell is the result of those outside of Christ Jesus?” And, of course, I believe that—it’s exactly why Christ died. Then my heart asks another question: “Why have you been involved with your friends for so long but have never even mentioned the name that offers to all everlasting life?”
Even though this is uncomfortable to hear, I know that God is being faithful, loving, and merciful with this gentle rebuke. The Father is always ready to extend mercy, pick us up, and use us if we ask Him. Our Father delights in using broken and contrite hearts that call out for His presence to work through us for the glory of His beloved Son.
Don’t forget to cling to hope in Him. Don’t forget to surrender all your expectations to His ways and His timing. And don’t forget to encourage one another to live authentically for Jesus.
John's travels for ministry behind the Iron Curtain led him to found East-West Ministries International in 1993. John and his wife, Susie, live in Dallas, Texas and have a grown daughter and two grandchildren.