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Do others respect your relationship with God?

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The Christian and the non-Christian are supposed to be different. In fact, so different, the Bible says that once a person becomes spiritually transformed, they become an entirely new creation. His includes the potential for their minds to be renewed into a way of thinking that is much more in line with God than the natural world. The born-again followers of Christ are considered His disciples, while those who have not yet had this spiritual experience remain in bondage, serving the dark side within their default condition. Since there are only two different spiritual identifications, they are not cozy with each other and have little in common.

Over the years, many Christians have not embraced this idea of being somewhat weird and generally incompatible. So, they reasoned that compromising was a great way to blend in with everyone else. However, it’s not mentioned anywhere in the Bible about trying to figure out a way to be accepted by the world. The Apostle in I Peter 2:9, when discussing the Christian life, writes, “But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a peculiar people; that should show forth the praises of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light.” A critical point in being a new creation is to not be ashamed so that others notice there is something unique about you. This special something is the love of Jesus Christ.

Just a few years ago, society had a considerable amount of respect and reverence for the things of God. Of course, it’s not like this today, and much of the decline is blamed on Christians not walking the talk, along with science and scholarly historians criticizing God’s existence. Hypocrisy over the years was being closely monitored by the world, and today most people are just not impressed. All of this, on top of the tremendous surge of immorality and a new wave of aggressive social politics, causes some Christians to feel intimidated to stand for what they believe. Many have allowed the fire of the Holy Spirit to cool off because they secretly desire to live in sin. As church members became more lukewarm, and the fear of a judging God and the demand for repentance was no longer a threat to the sinner, the lost felt comfortable, and now we can hardly tell them apart.

When the Holy Spirit is ignored, spiritual discernment fades. Our hatred for sin dissipates along with our agape love, a desire to pray and worship God, and a burden for lost souls, among other things. It’s called drifting away from the shore, while others describe backsliding as a fire that burns down to just embers and ends up just smoldering. How does this happen? Instead of continually praying for a stronger awareness of God’s presence, people decide they love the world more than they love God. As the passion and determination to obey divine truth become less important, the conscience defended all sense of guilt. Free will unanimously voted to embrace the darkness, and serving self became the accepted way of living.

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Since God has temporarily allowed the devil to manage the world, he is using technology as a part of his strategy to distract and lure Christians into a love affair with pleasure. He realizes the carnal mind wants to be entertained and is always vulnerable to self-satisfaction. If he can convince God’s people that doing whatever they want is alright with God, he has already won the battle. Remember, Satan tempted Eve with a deceptive and clever line of reasoning. This is spiritual warfare. Yes, there are pockets of Christians who have awakened and rededicated their lives to God. This remnant is now singing, “I have decided to follow Jesus,” and this excitement of spiritual revival is needed now more than ever. May I ask where you stand today? Are you drifting down the river of complacency? If you were to face God today, would you be filled with joy, or would you be embarrassed with how you are living? Talk to Him today and ask Jesus to change you into what He died for you to be. Giving Him control of your life is the best decision you will ever make.

Dr. Holland lives in Central Kentucky, where he is an ordained Christian minister, community chaplain, and author. Read more about the Christian life and his new book about miracles, “Receiving Our Healing,” at billyhollandministries.com or email him at [email protected].

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