I am patiently waiting for our fourth grandson to arrive. Okay, let me be honest. I’m waiting. We can leave the “patiently” part out. In fact, by the time you read this, he may be here.
The world my grandchildren will know is very different than the world of my childhood. Or even the world in which my children grew up. Our culture’s morals, values and behavior continue to shift dramatically away from God’s standards.
How can believers stand firm on God’s truth and engage our culture with the life-changing message of Jesus?
- Keep the cause of the Gospel primary. We cannot force godly standards on someone without Jesus. It will only sound foolish and judgmental to their “natural ears” (1 Corinthians 2:14). When we focus on introducing them to Jesus, the Holy Spirit will do the rest.
- Model a godly lifestyle. When Christians refuse to conform to the world, the world notices. A Christ-like life points people to Jesus and causes them to glorify God (1 Peter 2:11-12). Even if they don’t understand our lifestyle, they will respect us. This respect makes a great foundation on which to build a relationship.
- Engage in gracious conversation. Public words of condemnation only hurt. Dogmatic diatribes close down lines of communication. But honest, grace-filled conversations about “controversial” topics within the context of relationship can spark interest in Jesus (Colossians 4:5-6). Let’s be prepared to lovingly, respectfully and biblically speak to specific topics when asked (1 Peter 3:15).
- Do not support ungodly behavior. Sometimes Christians condone sinful behavior in a misguided attempt to be tolerant or relevant. For instance, after the Supreme Court’s decision last June to uphold same-sex marriage nationwide, many Christians added a rainbow to their social media profile photos. God’s standards do not change. In the public arena, it’s far better to be graciously silent than show open support.
- Do promote social change in positive, non-confrontational ways. Christians can vote, donate time and money, engage in politics, and support community efforts in ways that don’t invite confrontation and incite anger. For instance, supporting a crisis pregnancy center builds more relationships than an angry protest at an abortion clinic.
As we see in Romans, the best way to “conquer evil” is with “good” (Romans 12:21).
→ Kathy shares more about purposefully connecting with others based on the life of Paul in this article just for members of womensministry.net. Not a member? Join here so you can access member-only equipping resources.
GIVEAWAY: Leave a comment sharing how you have positively engaged the cultural with the life-changing message of Jesus and be entered to win a copy of Kathy’s newest Bible Study, Lavish Grace . Winner will be randomly selected from comments left by July 13, 2016.