As a lukewarm Christian, I hated the “Jesus freaks.” For those who are not quite familiar with that term, I will explain it to you in a minute. Before I continue, let me just inform you that I plan to be chill with this blog post and just allow you guys to see my heart. I will be back to being formal in my next blog post but as you can see from the title, this post will be as real as it gets. Anyways back to my point, I never quite got along with the Jesus freaks. Whenever I was with them, I felt something. I am not quite sure what I felt but it was conviction mixed with feelings of condemnation. I never wanted to engage in a conversation with them for too long because whenever I was around them, I felt a need to change but the truth was that I was comfortable in my sin. Okay, so let me give my definition of “Jesus freaks.” Jesus freaks were defined as those people who lived their lives strictly according to the Bible standards. They were the ones who always responded with “let me pray about it” whenever you asked them to make a decision. I always saw them as boring because all they did was go to church events and read the Bible. Whenever you asked if they could attend an event, they responded with “By God’s grace” when I simply wanted a yes or no answer. They never wanted to go to any party, they swore that drinking was a sin, they were the ones who always wore long skirts because they were convinced that everything else was immodest. To be honest, I thought the Jesus freaks were weird. I swore that I will never be like them because they were not fun to be around.
Recently, I was speaking with one of my friends and she casually mentioned that I was “saved, saved.” I never saw myself as that because honestly I still struggle in my Christian walk and I am simply a mess covered in grace. The more we continued in the conversation, I began to realize that her definition of someone who was “saved, saved” was my definition of “Jesus freaks” back in my unsaved days. She mentioned that I spend most of my time at church, I stopped drinking alcohol, I have no desire to go to parties or to do anything others consider fun, I do not listen to anything else but gospel music and she mentioned that whenever we were together, I always found a way to include Jesus in my conversation. She proceeded to let me know that there are some people who are considered “cool Christians” and then there were those who were “saved, saved”. The cool Christians according to her are those Christians who had a life outside of being Christians and you almost could not tell that they were Christians. After the conversation, we came to the conclusion that I was not one of the cool Christians and I realized that I have become those who I hated. I began to wonder when I became a Jesus freak. *inserts thinking emoji*.
I thought that I was a cool Christian. I still had friends who were not Christians and we were able to spend time together. I never noticed just how much I brought up Jesus in my conversations because He honestly came up in my conversations without me even thinking. I stopped listening to secular music because I simply prefer gospel music. I did stop drinking alcohol but that was only because the Lord led me to give it up. I attend church regularly because I genuinely love being in the presence of God. You are probably reading this and thinking to yourself “Why is she explaining herself.” You are right, I do not have to explain myself but I just did not want to be considered a “Jesus freak.” Afterwards, I tried to chill on the whole Christian thing. However, the more I tried to be a “chill christian”, the more I realized that I was indeed “saved,saved”.
About a month ago, I started my final semester of college. I got to one of my classes and we were asked to give an introduction. As a part of the introduction, the professor asked us to tell him what we considered to be the best song of 2018. I only listen to Gospel music so I gave him one of my favorites. He proceeded to play everyone music and when He played a song by Travis Greene that I thought was one of the best of 2018, I heard a couple students chuckle because I was the girl who thought to play “church music.”
At first I was hurt because I wanted to be a cool christian but the more I pondered on the phrase “saved, saved”, I realized that there is no such thing as being super saved. Being a Christian is not a part of my identity but being a Christian is my identity. Everything that I do flows from a heart that is totally surrendered to Christ. I cannot choose to not include God in certain areas of my life because my whole life belongs to Him. Jeremiah 20:9 says “But if I say, “I will not mention his word or speak anymore in his name,” his word is in my heart like a fire, a fire shut up in my bones. I am weary of holding it in; indeed, I cannot.” Like Jeremiah, I simply cannot choose to not include God in my conversations. When I speak about God, I speak from experience because I have tasted and seen that God is good. I could not stop talking about God even if I tried because I was formed by His Words and His Word sustains me till today. The reckless love of the Father encountered me at a time when I thought that I was doomed to perish which is why I desire to spend the rest of my life spreading the love of God. I love Jesus so much. I wish you guys could see my heart when I say this but I really love Him. When you encounter the love of the Father, it is impossible to remain lukewarm. The love of God turned Saul the man who murdered Christians into Paul who became the one who wrote most of the new testament.
I can totally relate to “Jesus freaks” a lot more now because the love of God changes you. The love of God compels us to righteous living. 2 Corinthians 5:14-15 says “For Christ’s love compels us, because we are convinced that one died for all, and therefore all died. And he died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised” again. I did not choose to be “saved, saved” but the this life chose me. (*flips hair* ). Being transparent with you guys, I used to hate gospel music while I was a lukewarm Christian. I always said that gospel music sounded like they should be sung at funerals and I never understood why anyone will willingly listen to gospel music when there were “better” songs. However, the more I experienced the love of God, the easier it became to kill my flesh. It turned out that I was right and Gospel music where songs that should be sung at funerals because the more I killed my flesh, I used the music to celebrate. The love of Christ compelled me to live a life of modesty because I now know hat I do not have to wear certain outfits to draw attention when the Father is in love with me. The love of God changed me from someone who was suicidal to someone who is expectant of her future. The love of God changed me to become a Jesus freak and I do not know how or when this happened but I am glad it did. We are called to live for Jesus although this may not be considered “cool”.
I have come to the conclusion that proclaiming that one is a Christian may be popular but truly living for God will never be cool. Romans 1:16 says “For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes: first to the Jew, then to the Gentile.” For the sake of the Gospel, I will forever remained unashamed. The Gospel is not about an event but it is about a Person; the Person who changed my life. The Gospel has the power to change lives and this is why I am committed to sharing the person of Jesus for the rest of my life. The Bible calls us the salt of the earth so expect to make people salty from time to time. Do not ever apologize for letting your light shine for Jesus. Being “saved, saved” simply means that I am not lukewarm and I am grateful that the people closest to me are able to notice that I am living my life according to the leading of the Holy Spirit.
On the other side of the coin, this does not mean that you should become someone who others cannot relate to simply because you are a Christian. You do not have to speak in tongues when you walk into a grocery store or quote Bible scriptures every time you have a conversation. While Jesus was on earth, He ate with sinners and people who were not “saved, saved” felt comfortable enough to invite Him over to their homes. This shows that being a Christian does not mean that you become unapproachable. We need to be approachable so that we will be in a position to extend the love of God to sinners. I have a lot of fun as a Christian! I chose to include the picture I used in this post because that was a real off guard picture where I was filled with joy. I was not doing anything special but I was simply having fun with some of my church family. When I am with my brothers and sisters in Christ, we pray for each other and in the next minute, we find something totally random to laugh about. Yes we are saved saved but we have joy in the Holy Ghost.
Romans 14:17 says “God’s kingdom isn’t about eating and drinking. It is about pleasing God, about living in peace, and about true happiness. All this comes from the Holy Spirit.” I want to emphasize the part that makes it clear that true happiness comes from the Holy Spirit. I do not find any happiness in going to the club anymore but my friends and I have random dance battles while we do the “shaku shaku” dance moves to African gospel music while we are in the room. I am not a dancer so whenever this happens, we always find something new to bring laughter. This is true happiness! There is a joy and peace that comes from pleasing God. It is possible to have fun as a Christian! I am truly grateful because the Lord has surrounded me with friends who love Him and who love to enjoy life. We go from jokingly dancing to praise break music to interceding for each other in the same breath. Being a Christian does not make you boring! I want us to be Christians who are unashamed for the gospel while also enjoying our lives as Christians. It is okay to not always be a “super deep saint” but sometimes step into the “shallow end” and enjoy little things such as breaking bread with the brethren, going to the movies, laughing about random world events and having joy in the Holy Ghost. This does not mean that you should compromise your standards as a Christian. There were times were I felt like I was too deep for the lukewarm Christians and too shallow for the super deep saints and I did not quite know where I fit in as a believer. However, I have come to realize that I do not need to be defined by labels. I am simply a Christian who is in love with Jesus and growing daily. You could label me as “saved, saved” because I live a set apart life but I am just a Christian who wants to make Jesus famous. For anyone out there who has ever felt like they were “not saved enough” or they were “saved, saved”, I simply want you to know that such labels do not exist. You are either saved or not saved. Continue living for Jesus and continue walking according to the leading of the Holy Spirit. You do not have to become boring or unapproachable simply because you are a Christian but you should never dim the light of Christ in you to fit in with unbelievers. In essence, Just be yourself. Do not ever feel a need to throw away your personality because you are a Christian. Let’s continue to live for Jesus while reaching the world with His love