LAWSON HEIGHTS ALLIANCE CHURCH
Some people have strange ideas about what it means to live as a Christian.
Some think it means you have to always be well presented, go to church twice
every Sunday, not stay out past midnight, and never, never have fun. Others
think it means giving up all trace of individuality, giving all your money to the
church, and living in some sort of commune. Still others think it's about withdrawing from the world, losing touch with reality, and only ever mixing
with other Christians. Unfortunately, some Christians also believe these myths, and give the rest of us a bad reputation.
Happily, we can tell you that none of the above is what real Christian living is about. So what does it mean to live as a Christian?
Well, Christianity is all about having a relationship with the God who created us. So to live as a Christian, you actually have to be one. That may sound obvious, but many people try to 'live a Christian life' without having any understanding of what Christianity is all about. If you haven't already, check out the Steps to Peace with God section to find out the answer.
So, there's no point trying to live like a Christian if you aren't one, but if you are, how will your belief affect the way you live? We suggest it will show itself in a number of ways:
1. God created us to relate to him, and any good relationship includes communication
We communicate with God by praying. There's nothing magical about prayer, and there's no right or wrong way of doing it. It's simply talking to God, it can be out loud, or just in your head, but we can be certain the God listens to us, and like all good communication, the more regular and honest, the better. God communicates with us through the Bible. The Bible is full of what God wants to tell us about how we should live. Things like 'love one another', and 'look after the poor and needy'.
2. God created us to relate to each other
As Christians we need each other, for support, encouragement, learning and growing. It's a helpful thing to meet with other Christians. This doesn't mean going to church every Sunday, two or three times, and it doesn't mean you should only mix with other Christians. But it is a good thing to meet regularly with a group of Christian friends. If you don't have a church home yet, we'd love to have you visit us one Sunday. Just contact us and we'll help you find us. Or perhaps you'd like to get connected through a small group. Come to our next Connection Night and meet some new people!
3. We will want to tell others about our relationship with God
The more we grow in our understanding of what God has done in our lives, the more we will want others to know about it, and how God can change their lives for the better. As we relate to God, and live according to his direction, others will notice a difference in us. God has given us the great privilege of sharing his love with others.
4. God created you to find significance in life and in your walk with Him through serving others.
He has equiped you in personality, talent and spiritual gifts. Check out the SERVE bistro table in the foyer after a service to find out more about this.
Living as a Christian is something that will continue for the rest of your life.
Being a Christian is about being in a relationship and God wants to know and love you forever... so....
1. Submit to Jesus
Hang on... what's this submitting business? Being a Christian involves your whole life. Everything. It means obeying Jesus and living with him as your boss. Like every other person, there will be lots of things in your life you need to change. Things like old rebellious habits (greed, anger, selfishness, and so on) and start some new ones that please God (like generosity, kindness, love and patience).
It's important to remember that all this stuff doesn't save us. NOTHING we do can make God love us any more than he does. But if we love him - which is what being a Christian is all about - then we should want to. This process will go on for the rest of your life, but God will be with you all the way. He'll keep speaking to you (through your reading of the Bible); he'll keep listening to you and helping you (as you pray to him); he'll empower you to change and to live his way (by his Spirit that lives within you); and he'll provide brothers and sisters to encourage you along the way (as you meet with other Christians).
2. Trust in Jesus
You will also need to keep putting your trust in Jesus. This is also ongoing. It's only because of Jesus (ie. his taking your
punishment on the cross) that you can be forgiven and put right with God (ie. become a Christian) . You'll need to keep
coming back to this again and again, because as you start to live God's new way, you will still fail and do the wrong thing.
We all do. We all need to keep looking back to the death of Jesus on the cross as the only grounds for our forgiveness.
We must never stop relying on him--and him alone--as the means by which we are forgiven and granted eternal life.
3. Walk with Jesus
Jesus is a real person and very much alive! He rose from the dead and now promises to be with us always! So, learn
to respond to Him
like He is.