Faith - June 7, 2015

Thoughts inspired by David Platt’s Book, Follow Me

I’ve been reading Follow Me by David Platt. And Wow.

It’s rocking my world.

But not in the feel-good way that you might presume. Rather, in a way that leaves me eagerly and wholeheartedly chasing (sprinting) after Christ. Specifically, over the past few weeks, I’ve been spending hours (and craving more) of my free time reading and studying his Word. This is not normal. Yes, I have my daily quiet time. But I’ve never hung out at a coffee shop for 6 hours reading the bible. Never. Like, what? Who is this girl?

This is Not About Me

I have no doubt that my tenacity, drive and desire are from the Lord. Because yes, I’m a hard worker and I’ve always been pretty studious; but even for me, this is weird.

Let’s be honest, I don’t typically crave reading the bible over watching Netflix. So yeah, don’t put me on any silly pedestal. If anything, ask Him to give you a little dose of this craziness for yourself. It’ll turn your world upside down.

Bottom line is, I don’t want you to read this and feel like you’re not a ‘good enough christian’ (#lies) if you’re not doing the same. My motive for sharing is to simply explain how the Lord is changing my desires and that it legitimately feels natural, not forced or legalistic. Ok? Great.

Intro to the Book and Thoughts

Back to the book. Platt breaks down what it means to truly follow Christ (as Jesus commands to the fishermen in Matthew 4:19), hitting on so much hard-to-hear yet necessary and biblically-rooted TRUTH.

We all like to hear the feel-good stuff. And we get a little uncomfortable when we’re confronted with the hard things in faith. Frankly, I’m super uncomfortable posting this (#bomb) to my perfectly crafted little blog of clothes, bright colors and pretty things.

But y’all, we need to remember that being a Christian means suffering. In fact, we are promised tribulation. And to avoid this blatant truth is to do ourselves a major disservice with dire consequences. In the same vein, beware of the ‘prosperity gospel‘. It’s tricky and I urge you to be on your guard, so not to fall victim to it. Seek truth for yourself and seek it earnestly – ask questions, look it up, be skeptical.

As someone who claims to be a Christian, having influence (albeit minor) over young girls/women, I would hate to mislead anyone into thinking that being a Christian is easy, cool, or fashionable. Because that’s a lie.

This is why I mix my personal and professional life. In a sense, they’re inextricably intertwined. My blog is about my style (mostly). And my instagram is about my life. And my blog and instagram are my job (at the moment). And so thus, my personal life is (in this odd and strange case) somewhat a reflection of my professional life. I’ve come to realize that people associate me and what I do and what I say with ‘being a Christian’. And I take that very seriously and would never want to paint the Christian life in a false light.

Are You Drinking The Feel-Good Kool-Aid?

Back to Platt’s book. I’ve been thinking a lot about how easy it is for truth to be twisted, especially when people are solely relying on words from other people rather than that of the bible. In other words, some of us don’t always seek truth for ourselves but instead believe what we are told without question.

It’s crazy and scary how our world/culture has “subtly and deceptively minimized the magnitude of what it means to follow [Christ]…We’ve taken the lifeblood out of Christianity and put Kool-Aid in its place so that it tastes better to the crowds…” #ouch

I think we have all fallen victim to the ‘Kool-Aid’ at some time or another. I know I have and STILL do. That’s why seeking truth and being in the written word of God on a daily basis is so important. We must constantly keep ourselves on guard and in check of the lies of this world. Because believe me, they will suck you in from time to time.

Inviting Jesus into Your Heart, then what?

I want to mention a quote from the end of chapter 1 that really struck me. And it has me thinking again (as I was back in March – see instagram below) about the fruits of the spirit and how they’re truly a reflection of how well we’re watering our roots.

Platt says, of the journey that is walking with Christ:

“The journey begins, though, with truly understanding what it means to be a Christian. To say that you believe in Jesus apart from conversion in your life completely misses the essence of what it means to follow him. Do not be deceived. Your relationship with Jesus and your status before God are not based on a decision you made, a prayer you prayed, a card you signed, or a hand you raised however many years ago…”

I don’t know about you, but I was most certainly told (more times than one) that all I needed to do was ‘ask Jesus into my heart’ – to forgive my sins and accept him as my savior. And BAM! I’m saved and on my way to Heaven. No matter what I do (neither life, nor death…) would mess this up.

That time I asked Jesus into my heart at summer camp

For me, this ‘invitation’ prayer happened at summer camp on the porch of Cabin 24 when I was 12 years old (I think?). At this point in my life, I had already ‘had my first communion’ and went through all the official-ness and stuff in the Catholic church (aside from the other stuff you do when you get to high school, but that’s besides the point). Oh, and I was baptized before I could talk. So I was already technically a ‘christian’ (in my little mind), but now it was even MORE official. I was set for life.

I’m not so sure I really understood what it meant to ‘give my life for Jesus’ at this point in my life. But hey, that’s okay. It’s part of my story and I’m thankful for every step along the way.

Is that what your story looked like? Did you go to summer camp?

Back to Platt’s quote above. I don’t think I truly came to understand what it meant to ‘follow Him’ until very recently. In fact, I think my understanding of it all had a lot to do with the realization of how important the FRUIT of the Spirit is and how, put simply, if your life doesn’t have fruit in it, can you really have Faith? So yeah, this got me thinking. #MindBlown

Okay that’s enough for today. I just skipped Sunday school to write this (oops). I started writing this as an instagram in the church parking lot…and then after I had missed sunday school and realized that my insta caption had exceeded the maximum number of characters, I decided to copy and paste this into a blog post.

So yeah, I’m gonna peace out now. Hope you have an awesome Sunday!