Distant. That’s the way of the Christian life at times.
The feeling of being distant from non-believers, marginal Christians, family, and friends seeps into our beings as we feel adrift in the culture that we live in.
6am coffee on a mid-summer morning brings little comfort as the birds chirp in hope that a reprieve to the heat is coming. Yet the warmth of the drink only creates a longing for a reprieve from the angst we feel looking ahead to a day that creates a distance between us and fellow man. Something drives us further out and the anchor we once had in material foundations has been severed. Those who use to pull us back in are no longer reaching out. They are barely visible in the distance that separates us from the herd.
We feel forgotten. They no longer want us around. We are too religious, too involved in our Jesus, and too moralistic to keep those ties that were suppose to bind us forever. Now foreigners and exiles in a land that once held us dear, we are urged to be more than the expectancy that culture tries to label us with.Now foreigners and exiles in a land that once held us dear, we are urged to be more than the expectancy that culture tries to label us with. Click To Tweet
1 Peter 2:9 NIV
But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.
Peter declared that we are called for more, that our distance from the world is good. When we tried to fit in and sought after approval we were not a true people. But when called us to Himself, when we opened our eyes to the truth of the cross, and grabbed on to Christ, we received God’s mercy.
Approval, togetherness in a common cultural norm, and self-righteousness doesn’t anchor us to truth. God is the one who sanctifies us, calls us to be holy because He is holy. We are set apart in Him. Made for more, we are to live in such a way that people can’t accuse us of doing bad or of associating with sinners in such a way that we follow their example.
1 Peter 2:11-12
Dear friends, I urge you, as foreigners and exiles, to abstain from sinful desires, which wage war against your soul. Live such good lives among the pagans that, though they accuse you of doing wrong, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day he visits us.
As we live like we are set apart, do not not dismiss living among others. Inside of our distant feelings, we need to insert ourselves in love, truth and grace. Let us declare the Gospel in our actions and thought lives as we create authentic conversations, prayers and deeds among those friends and family, co-workers, and cultural Christians that we interact with.
11 thoughts on “Distant, Not Dismissive”
I’m glad I ran across this. My best girl friend of 20 years and I are taking separate journeys right now, and we aren’t in contact with each other, and she thinks i’m being dismissive of her as well. I feel for her, but I can’t join her on her path away from God. But I feel freedom and I feel more connected with God than every and feel like I know my journey better now that I’ve learned about being codependent. Unfortunately Satan was using her to keep my morally minded and being ok with sins that I felt were wrong, but did to make her happy. I’m so grateful for the necessary but hard detachment from her. I will always love her.. but I’m learning I can’t be part of her journey right now.. God has me on a new journey. Praise God for this new chance!
I completely understand what you’re going through. It’s tough but God has a plan.
“We feel forgotten.They no longer want us around. We are too religious, too involved in our Jesus, and too moralistic to keep those ties that were suppose to bind us forever.” This has been my recent experience with “Christians.” Many of us have conformed to the patterns of the world therefore those that haven’t are shunned.
So very true.
I remember what a relief it was to me when I first learned that I wasn’t supposed to fit in or feel too comfortable in the world! Yes, it’s hard sometime! Well, let’s be honest it’s hard most of the time to feel separated when you care so for others but so worth it to know it’s because we’re set apart by God and His love for us! Love these thoughts Maryann!
Living in exile requires living in community, and while church can be challenging, I’m sure Peter would tell us to hang in there through the ups and downs so our impact can be multiplied.
Thank you for this thought provoking post! x
I resonate so much with this! The closer I get to Jesus, the more distant I get from those who only care about material things.
I get that a lot, thinking I’m better, I just don’t want to do what they do or hurt the Lord after all He has done for me.
Let us declare the gospel in all kinds of ways. Yes! Visiting you from the fresh market friday link up. laurensparks.net5
Yes! We desire a heavenly country! But while we are here as exiles, we do have to live authentic Christian lives to point the way to Christ.
Loved your post!