Everyone wants to be different…everyone wants to stand out in the crowd…everyone want to be an “individual”. People go the extra mile to dress different, to fix their hair in crazy, wild, and wacky styles. It is okay for people to dress in all black, with tongue rings, eye rings, spiked hair, and skeleton shirts. It is okay for people to dress half-naked with 15 different colors in their hair. It is okay for guys to wear skinny jeans–something you would normally see females wearing. It is okay for Muslims to wear scarves around their faces and clothes to cover their body from head to toe. However, let people say they are Christians, then they become weird, strange, and judgmental. Far be it for them not to “dress” like everyone else. No, they cannot be an “individual”…they are not allowed to have an identity—it is too offensive.
Why do people go the extra mile to be “different”? Why is it “cool” and acceptable for Lady Gaga to wear a dress made of meat? Why is it cool for guys to be in relationships with guys and girls to be in relationships with girls? This is all in the name of expressing their identity. But a Christian is strange if they pray in public, if they attend church three times a week, if they don’t listen to rap and hip hop, if they don’t curse, if they talk about Jesus…and far be it if they try to share Jesus with others, why that’s just plain ludicrous…but why…no one can tell me why being a Christian is strange. It is abnormal, but no one considers it creative or different.
It is not being different when people accept you…being different is being able to stand when everyone else is condemning you. Being different is what Jesus did. He challenged those in authority, He taught love, and compassion, when everyone else was teaching the law—giving an eye for an eye. Jesus said to forgive, to love, to show mercy and be kind to those who hurt you. Even today, people cannot embrace this teaching. Even today, Jesus would still be considered an outcast. How do I know, because His followers (Christians) are treated as outcast.
Nevertheless, it is a joy and a privilege to be an outcast for Jesus. If living a life of love, honesty, integrity, kindness, compassion, mercy, forgiveness, and righteousness makes a person an outcast. I count myself privileged to live such a life. The Bible says no greater love than a friend laying his life for a friend. Jesus left His heavenly home to come to an earthly pit hole, full of anger, jealousy, and lies, in order to give salvation to all people—now that is being different…that is being an individual…that is having an identity.
Keys2hope is accepting this unconditional love, following Christ, and being an example of His Saving Grace. You want to be radical, just become a Christian; you want to be different and make a difference, just accept Jesus into your heart and share His love with others.