Jesus was radically different than anyone who came before him. The things he taught and the way he lived were revolutionary. He understood God’s Word better than anyone.
He called us to be in this world but not of it. He didn’t fit in, and he didn’t care. He knew what his purpose was and he knew God had a plan for him.
After his death, the early Christians were on the fringe of society. They met secretly and were no longer conforming to the pattern of this world. (Romans 12:2) They didn’t fit in, and they didn’t care. But over the next several hundred years, Christianity spread throughout the world.
Instead of being on the fringe of society, they became the majority.
Pop culture and Christian culture became intertwined. If you wanted to fit in, becoming a Christian could help you do that, which is why the Bible used to be the most read book. But most people I meet today have not read it, do not quote from it, do not know many stories from it, and do not use it at all in their daily life. And for many years I wasn’t using it in my daily life either.
I’m a Xennial, and my generation, along with Generation X and Millenials, cannot list the Bible as part of their pop culture. For our generations, pop culture is sex, drugs, and rock and roll.
The world dictates our life path. We look around to see what others are doing and we try to do the same thing, or better. We do whatever we can to fit in and be successful.
I grew up with the idea that “fitting in” was the key to happiness. My parents didn’t teach me this, but the world did.
We went to church every Sunday, but what I learnt at school was often different from what I learnt at church, and I had a hard time reconciling the two.
From historical timelines to puberty and partying, there seemed to be two different realities – one at church, and one in the world. I couldn’t understand how to make these two worlds coexist, because they are contradictory.
We, as Christians, must stop pretending that we are a part of mainstream society. As followers of Jesus, we are called to be radically different, just as he was. We are called to be on the fringe of society, just like the early Christians.
God calls us to be pop culture dropouts.
We are called to be transformed by the renewing of our minds. (Romans 12:2) We are called to cling to the truth in a world full of lies. We are called to speak the truth with love. We are called to be discerning, to recognize the false teachers and liars. We are called to put God first and seek Him above all else.
How does the American dream fit into God’s plans for us? Pop culture tells us the American dream is acquiring more money and more stuff; finding happiness, however we choose; finding a cause to support and finding our identity in a group of like-minded people. But God has a purpose and a plan for each of us.
We are here to serve Him, not ourselves. We are here to share His love with others, not to achieve our version of success. We are here to grow closer to Him, not to rack up debt and accomplishments. We are here to further His kingdom on earth, not to build our kingdoms.
So my fellow Gen X/Xennial/Millenials - let’s start a new revolution. Let’s be ok with not fitting in. Let’s find the truth in God’s Word, and not in what celebrities say. Let’s look to God for truth and not just seek out people who agree with us. Let’s search for the real truth instead of “our truth.” Let’s seek to rejoice in the truth and not delight in evil. (1 Corinthians 13:6) Let’s show up with grace and truth when God’s Word is misconstrued. Let’s trust God with our lives and our futures and fulfill His purpose for us. Let’s point EVERYTHING back to God. Let’s talk about God and His commandments when we sit at home and when we walk along the road, when we lie down and when we get up. Let’s tie them as symbols on our hands and foreheads; write them on the doorframes of our houses and gates. (Deuteronomy 6:6-9)
Let’s be pop culture dropouts and see what God does with the next generation.
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