THE BIG QUESTION: What does it actually mean to
live life as Christian?
Let me start off by saying this: I will never ever be able to get this post right. And honestly, I don’t think any human being on earth will be able to either. I don’t believe that anyone exactly knows all the answers to what it truly means to live life as a Christian, to live the perfect Christian life. Sure we may be almost positive in what we believe, thanks to the Bible, but no one has all the answers on what it means to live it out in today’s society. I believe that everyone’s situation is different, and although there are the concrete principles that every Christian should follow, the smaller details in how we live out our faith may be different for every person. You have probably read or heard multiple times about how Christians are supposed to go through life, and how we are supposed to act and interact with others in an effort to live out and demonstrate our faith. Everything you have read or listened to was, from my guess, a little bit different for each source.
Through this post, I am going to explain as best as I can what exactly it means for me to live life as a young, Christian woman in today’s world. I will probably miss a lot of points, and may not even be exactly correct in everything I say, but this is the core of what living out my faith means and looks like for me. I am far from perfect, in fact, I am quite the opposite. To be honest, most days I epically fail at succeeding in doing these things. I am still learning and growing in my faith every single day just like all of you. We never stop growing. My hope is that my opinion on what it means to be a Christian in the context of my life will allow you to pick up bits and pieces that can fit into your life and ultimately help you in your never ending faith journey and relationship with God.
So, here it goes, Sarah’s top answers to THE BIG QUESTION:
- FOLLOW and TRUST: Living life as a follower of God is more than just getting up early to read your Bible, taking time to pray, going to Bible studies, and going to church every Sunday morning. It is even more than listening to worship music and thanking and praising God throughout the day. It is an active effort and a constant battle every day to TRUST in God and do what He is calling you to do. And I use the word battle because it is far from easy. The easy thing to do is follow your own plan for the day, your own plan for your life that you think is so nicely laid out and perfect. Well, guess what? Being a Christian doesn’t mean you get to follow this plan that you think is so perfect because you get to follow GOD’S PLAN. And trust me, it is a million times better than any plan you could have made up yourself. Trusting in God and surrendering everything to Him is a continuous struggle for me. I am constantly making a plan for my day, planning for tomorrow and yes, even planning for my life. What can I say, I’m a planner. But I have learned, and I still have A LOT of learning to do in this area, that living as a Christian does not mean sticking to your own plan for your life. It means TRUSTING and FOLLOWING God’s plan, not your own, because that is the plan that will win out anyways. You lead, I follow. Your will, Your way, always.
o Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the LORD’s purpose that prevails. – Proverbs 19:21.
- RELATIONSHIPS: Not only in the Christian faith is it important to have a strong relationship with God through prayer and listening to the Holy Spirit, but it is also important to have strong relationships with both believers and non-believers in your life. A strong relationship with believers allows you to be accountable for each other and help each other in the faith journey. Fellowship and community is important in the Christian faith. In my life, I have relationships with my family, friends, bible study and church community that allow me to gain this fellowship that I need to help me live life as a Christian. I also believe that it is just as important to have strong relationships with people in your life that are non-believers so that you can show them Christ and demonstrate to them what your faith means to you. God calls us to spread His good news, and having these strong bonds with non-believers will allow you to do that. I want to strive to do better to make an effort to show my faith when I am around people that don’t understand the Christian life. In no means do I want to force it on them, but just live it out for them to see, and always be open to talk about it if they have questions. You should live out your faith wherever you are, am I right? So just because you are surrounded by non-believers doesn’t mean this statement doesn’t apply. Live out your faith, wherever you are and whoever you are with.
o Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their toil. For if they fall, one will lift up his fellow. But woe to him who is alone when he falls and has not another to lift him up! Again, if two lie together, they keep warm, but how can one keep warm alone? And though a man might prevail against one who is alone, two will withstand him – a threefold cord is not quickly broken. – Ecclesiastes 4:9-12
o And he said to them, “Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation.” – Mark 16:15
- TAKING THE TIME: Tied closely with relationships, taking the time refers to taking that extra time out of your week to meet with a friend who may be struggling with a certain part in their faith or going through a rough time. It means meeting someone you don’t know so well for coffee. It means always striving to strengthen your relationships between your family and friends. Simply taking the time to put down what you have to get done to be there for someone else is huge, and something I think all Christians should strive to do. God wants us to be in community with each other. He calls us to put down all selfish desires and only do things that will help those around us. We can do this by taking the time to listen to one another’s burdens. Of course, taking the time also refers to taking the time to pray, read our Bible, and sit in silence and feel the presence of the Holy Spirit. Making time for God and others every day is essential to living out the Christian faith.
o Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing. – Thessalonians 5:11
- BIBLICAL PERSPECTIVE: As Christians, we approach situations differently from the rest of the world and see things in a different light. As we approach both known and unknown situations, it is important to remember what we know is right, and what God’s word says. In my life, this means obeying God’s word and not living the “college life” that the secular world might think that I should live. It means I take up opportunities that I know will help me in my walk with God, and help me stay away from things that I know might push me away from what God’s word says. When I approach new, sometimes scary, situations and I don’t know what to do, I rely on God’s word as a backbone to my reasoning. This may be something that other’s may not be able to see right away, but they will eventually see that the manner in which you deal with situations is a little different. It could be shown not only through your actions, but also through the way you use your words. Living life as a Christian means you don’t fall into saying the same answers and words as the rest of the world, but your words reflect exactly what the Holy Spirit has brought you to believe. It is so easy for me to fall into going along with everyone else and saying what they want me to say, but this is not the way to live out my faith to the fullest. Having a biblical perspective will change your mindset and allow you to adjust your words and actions that reflect God’s word.
o Study the Book of Instruction continually. Meditate on it day and night so you will be sure to obey everything written in it. Only then will you prosper and succeed in all you do. – Joshua 1:8
- LETTING GOD TAKE CONTROL: Going along with following and trusting in God, we as Christians have to give our life over to Him, give Him total control. This one is also especially hard for me. What this looks like in my life, or what I try to make it look like, is giving Him all my plans, worries, fears and doubts. Giving Him my everything and realizing that He is my One Strength and can get me through any situation. As Christians, we are not supposed to fall into this constant stage of worrying because we have God by our side at all times. It is also under His control, so all we can do is work to live out His plan and do His will, and the rest will fall into place. I believe that if we are constantly working towards following God, we shouldn’t have to worry about anything and whether or not we are doing what we should be doing. Giving Him total control of our lives, surrendering, and laying all of our worries at his feet.
o Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. – 1 Peter 5: 6-7
These are the top five ways I strive to live out the Christian faith in my life, and I know there are many more. Now that I have given you a little bit of a look into my answers, let me ask you this: What does it mean to live out the Christian faith in YOUR life? What do you want it to look like?
Wishing everyone the best in their walk with Christ. And as always, feel free to contact me using the contact me tab on the side of my blog.