I don’t know about you, but I tend to fan-girl female Christian authors. The past few months, a certain author has been inspiring me to do more, but a fellow blogger called out a few issues her a popular book, and I re-acknowledged those issues. So, I dove a little deeper. I looked at this author’s social media accounts, and I realized I had to search VERY hard to find God. Don’t get me wrong, I believe this woman is sharing truth, but watching this author rise to success has shown me how easily it is to sell out.
See, even in her book, she gives caution to those who have firm holds to their faith, because we may be damaging others who believe differently.
There is no deciding my faith is right – the Word of God says that my God is the only God. Jesus died on a cross for my sins. I will unashamedly proclaim this truth the rest of my days!
The minute that we decide to discount our beliefs, we have sold out. It happens often. Our beginnings may be humble and based in God’s truth, but as we grow and flourish, we distract ourselves with what the world promises, and what will sell. Compromises are made, and more and more of our truth is covered up in favor of success.
Francis Chan says, “Herein lies the danger of clamoring for attention: we don’t realize that true joy comes from the opposite. Joy comes as we stand among those Jesus has redeemed and get lost in a sea of worship, becoming fully a part of something sacred.”
If I am remembered for anything, I want it to be for following Jesus Christ no matter what. I want it to be that I lived a life that worshipped my Creator with my whole being, unashamed.
While we don’t want to bombard unbelievers with scripture and chats about hellfire and brimstone upon first meeting them, we cannot ignore our purpose. Proclaim truth at all times, and live a life that honors and acknowledges God in every aspect.
You are the light of the world – like a city on a hilltop that cannot be hidden. No one lights a lamp and then puts it under a basket. Instead, a lamp is placed on a stand, where it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your Heavenly Father.
-Jesus Christ, Matthew 5:14-16
My friends, I don’t want to sugar coat it – we are not of this world. Where are you basing your life – in the satisfaction of people or the satisfaction of spreading the gospel? The times when my life has felt most meaningful and the times my satisfaction has been most complete have been when I’m rooted in God first.
C.S. Lewis said, “Put first things first and we get second things thrown in: put second things first and we lost both first and second things. We never get, say, even the sensual pleasure of food at its best when we are being greedy.”
Putting God first means so many beautiful things for our lives. Yes, it does mean we will face hardship, but the good from God will always outweigh our trials. If the way we represent ourselves to the world is as children of God before anything else, we aren’t able to be touched by the pain of sin and death – we will have victory because He is our victory, not because we sold out to the world.
I’m not saying that it is impossible to follow God and prosper in the world, but we are called to prosper in God first – and fame and riches MAY come, or they may not. What I’m saying is that we will present God as our Savior and the reason for our hope in this life, no matter our standing with our friends, our family, our church, our followers on social media or our listeners on our podcasts. No matter if that means we will lose friends, family, church, or followers. No matter if it means the book deal will never come. No matter if it means we lose everything.
Have faith to continue to honor God with the work you are doing. The rest of life’s experiences will seem so much sweeter, because you will have the wisdom to discern what is worth pursuing and what should be put aside.