Commentary by Dr. Whitesel: In my book Spiritual Waypoints: Helping Others Navigate the Journey (Wesleyan Publishing House) I describe “Waypoint 6” as the customary “post-conversion evaluation” that new Christians often undergo after accepting Christ. Not recognizing this stage can lead mature Christians to ignore the spiritual questions and struggles of their younger counterparts . Here’s a good reminder from Lacrae’s new book.
by Lacrae, Facts and Trends, LifeWay, 5/3/16.
When I decided to follow Jesus one night at a Christian conference in Atlanta, I assumed becoming a Christian would make life easier. I thought the rest of my life would be smiling and smooth sailing.
I assumed I wouldn’t be tempted by women and partying and acceptance and all the things that I’d been a slave to for so many years. I thought I would walk around with a continual inner peace and serenity like Gandhi or something.
This turns out to be a lie that too many people believe. You’ll actually experience more temptation, not less, after you become a Christian. Following Jesus doesn’t mean you’ll start living perfectly overnight. It certainly doesn’t mean your problems will disappear.
Rather than ridding you of problems or temptations, following Jesus means you have a place—no, a person—to run to when they come. And the power to overcome them.
I wish someone had told me this after that night in Atlanta. Because when I started stumbling and faltering after I became a Christian, I hid my struggles. Why? Because I didn’t think it was supposed to go down like that. And because too many Christians I know lived by the same lie and condemned, shamed, and rejected other Christians who messed up.
Since I thought I was supposed to be instantly sinless and my Christian friends did too, I lived a double life. I acted like a Christian around other Christians, but I let loose whenever I wasn’t.
I can’t tell you where we got the idea that following Jesus is some kind of quick fix for all of our struggles, but it wasn’t from the Bible. No, the Scripture is like one big, unbroken story about people who decided to follow God and ended up failing almost as much as they succeeded.
Excerpted from Unashamed. Used by permission of B&H Publishing. Read more at … http://factsandtrends.net/2016/05/03/lecrae-what-i-wish-christians-had-told-me/#.V7QXgMT3aJI