Evangelism, Obedience

6 Unworldly Ways to Make the World Wonder Why You’re Weird

A dark, hazy room, colored lights flashing, filled with people swaying to chart-topping music, their drink of choice in hand, just there to have a good time with friends.

Is it a club? A concert? A party?

Or church?

With our coffee bars, cutting edge music from the latest and greatest Christian bands, and come hither atmosphere of smoke machines, light shows, and fun, fun, fun, sometimes it’s hard to tell.

And just as we import worldliness into the church, we’re exporting worldly Christians to our local communities. “Christians” who lie, cheat, carouse, defy authority, use profanity, angrily explode, and are sexually immoral. It’s getting more and more difficult to distinguish God’s people from worldlings, and the worldlings are growing disillusioned. Not just with us, but with God.

“What’s the point of believing in a God who produces people who look exactly like I do?” the world wonders. “What kind of impotent God is this, anyway?”

God gets that. He has gotten that from time immemorial.

He is different. He is other. He is in a class by Himself.

And as His people, we’re supposed to reflect that otherly set apart-ness by being otherly and set apart ourselves.

God didn’t command His people not to wear garments of mixed fibers because He was trying to support the Egyptian cotton market, and He didn’t forbid His people to eat crustaceans to ruin date night at the Red Lobster. He wanted His people to be unique among the pagan nations as He was unique among the pagan gods. He wanted those pagan people to point their fingers at the Israelites and say, “Those people are different, and I want to know why.”

As God’s people living among pagans today, we have the same unique opportunity to point them to the one, true God. How? By unhitching from the Old Testament, as some would have us believe? No. I tell you, we need to look back to our forefathers in the faith and take a page out of their Book. Not by wearing dietary laws on our sleeves of 100% cotton, because we’re not Jews. But by simply obeying God’s commands to His people today.

It ain’t rocket surgery, folks. We don’t need to take surveys to find out what pagan people want. We don’t need gimmicks and tricks. We don’t need to scour Christian industry catalogs hoping against hope that we can find some thing to order that will attract lost people to Jesus.

The most jaw-dropping, astounding, attention-grabbing thing in this world is simple Christians living in simple obedience to God’s simple commands. Isn’t it amazing that something so simple is simply amazing to the world?

Want to be wonderfully, wildly weird to the world so they’ll wonder why? Try these six things.

1.
Submit to your husband

There’s nothing more “against the grain” right now than God’s design for marriage. Feminists have brainwashed many women (and men) into thinking there’s a better way, but we have only to look back across the last several decades to see a landscape littered with unhappy marriages, divorce, abuse, abortion, cohabitation, and single parenting (or…you know…we could look in our Bibles) to know that’s not true.

Ephesians 5:22-33 explains that obeying God’s instructions for being godly wives and husbands isn’t just good for our marriage and home life. It’s a picture of Christ and His church that we get to act out before a watching world.

So when your friend from work catches a glimpse of your “backwards” marriage that seems to be working a lot better than hers and asks you about it, walk through that open door, talk to her, listen to her, and introduce her to the Bridegroom who came to redeem His bride.

2.
Discipline your children

Hardly a week goes by that someone doesn’t compliment me or my husband on how well-behaved our children are. I’m always appreciative of their kindness, and God has truly blessed us with wonderful children, but there’s nothing exceptional about them in the behavioral department, and there’s nothing exceptional about us as parents. My kids are normal. When I was a kid, the majority of kids acted the way my kids act – respectful and obedient – because the majority of parents raised and disciplined their children.

Now, it’s practically an aberration to encounter normal, well-behaved children (even in church – Christian parents, I’m looking at you.). Yes, everybody’s kid acts up from time to time. Yes, some children are naturally more stubborn than others. I know all the “but’s” and exceptions. But if you obediently bring your children up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord, they’re going to be reasonably well-behaved most of the time, and you’re going to have people stop you at the store, the library, their school, and marvel about it. What are you doing as a parent that makes your kid different? And that’s when you get to tell them about your heavenly Father and His one and only Son.

3.
Be kind

It seems like everyone you run into these days is hurting. Even the people who mistreat you in a rude, angry way are probably acting that way because they’re hurting inside. They don’t know how to handle it, they have no peace, and they’re without hope. All because they’re without Christ.

I used to watch the TV show Undercover Boss fairly regularly. The head of a major company dons a disguise and goes to work among his employees to see how his company is really running and what he can do to improve it. In every episode, the boss gets to know good employees who are going through a difficult time – his mother is dying, her child is sick, he can’t afford a car, she’s trying to work her way through school. And at the end of every episode, the boss reveals himself to the employees and gives each of them thousands of dollars to help with their problems. And at the end of every episode, the employees (and I) are in tears. Yes, the money was helpful and a relief to these folks, but I could see in most of their eyes that it wasn’t just about the money. They were overcome that someone actually cared enough about them to be kind to them.

We live in a cruel, heartless, impatient, unforgiving world. When you take a moment to speak a kind word to someone, provide for a person who’s in need, help a total  stranger, offer cheerful encouragement, just to take a moment to obey Scripture’s admonition to care for someone, it knocks people completely off guard. “Why? Why would you be so kind to me?” a young lady once tearfully asked me after I had done a very small thing for her. It was such a joy to wrap my arms around her and explain, “Because Jesus has been so kind to me.”

4.
Turn the other cheek

If someone steals “your” parking place and you stomp over to her and bless her out, is that going to open a door for you to share the gospel with her? Would she even listen to you if you tried?

In the same way that hurt people expect others to hurt them, people who lash out in anger or do something they know is unfair or unkind expect an angry response from others.

Don’t give it to them. Just don’t. You don’t have to, if you’re a Believer. You have the Fruit of the Spirit of self control.

Obey Jesus’ teaching to turn the other cheek and go the extra mile, and watch as a gentle answer turns away wrath, and, hopefully, leads to a conversation about the Prince of Peace.

5.
Say, “I was wrong.”

The heaviest artillery in a lost person’s arsenal is to accuse or prove someone of being wrong. The reason that even exists as a weapon is because everyone’s natural instinct is to dig our heels in, make excuses, and insist we were actually right.

It can be almost comical to watch someone process from self-righteous victory to “What just happened here?” confusion when you unabashedly admit you were wrong, graciously apologize, and offer to make things right. And, of course, if you realize you were wrong about something before anyone else does, you don’t have to wait to be confronted. You can march in and throw yourself on the “I was wrong,” grenade before anybody realizes what’s going on.

It’s hard to admit we were wrong about something, because, even as Christians, we struggle with pride. Pride is all lost people have to hold on to, so it doesn’t compute when Christians willingly lay down their pride and take up humility by admitting and apologizing for wrongdoing. “It took guts to own up to that,” your neighbor thinks, “I wonder what motivated her to do that?”. Because, dear friend, I have a Savior who, in humility, laid everything down for me. How could I not lay down something so small in obedience to Him?

6.
Forgive

What is a worldly person’s response when someone wrongs her? Anger. Bitterness. A grudge as high and long and thick as a brick wall. “I will never forgive you!” screamed as she slams out the door and out of that person’s life forever.

The kind of response Christ has every right to extend to us for our sin…but chooses not to.

Think back to when Christ saved you. Do you remember how heavy your sin was and how hopeless you felt? And then, that glorious moment that took your breath away when, for no other reason but grace and mercy, He cleansed you of all your rebellion and wrongdoing and pronounced you forgiven?

When we forgive someone who has sinned against us, we have the honor of pulling back the veil and giving a sinner a peek at the forgiveness Christ offers. It might be the kind of forgiveness He asked for the unrepentant who were crucifying Him. Or it might be the forgiveness He extended to a repentant woman whose sins were many.

“Why would you forgive me? I would never forgive someone who hurt me like that.” It’s the perfect moment to tell her about the One we have all sinned against, who delights to extend forgiveness to each of us.

 

The people around us, watching us every day, need Jesus. As His servants and ambassadors, we have the privilege, the honor, and the responsibility to represent Him well to them by simply obeying His Word. The world doesn’t need “Christians” who look just like them. The world needs Christians who look just like Jesus.

17 thoughts on “6 Unworldly Ways to Make the World Wonder Why You’re Weird”

  1. It’s interesting that marriage & kids are your first tips… I would agree that those are the very foundation of society. Happy marriages & happy kids (loved, safe, & kids that are appropriately disciplined). These kids are more likely to go out into the world and fulfill their purpose. Not produce crime and disorder. Which is, unfortunately, on the uptick. I think you should do a post on what submission is & isn’t because I agree with what you’re saying but I think some people don’t understand it & they fear it would make being the wife the doormat (which is not what the Bible says).

    Liked by 1 person

  2. This is one of the best stated prescriptions I’ve ever read for successfully pursuing a life pleasing to and honoring God. Thank you for the reminders Michelle.

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  3. Thank you for this post. I had two experiences in the last year where I went to people to ask forgiveness. For one person, I knew what I did wrong and was able to ask forgiveness for that offense. For the other person, I am not quite sure what I did wrong, but I knew she was angry with me and that I had done something that offended her. Neither person was willing to forgive me. With the first person, she did reach a point where she said she forgave me and we are slowly rebuilding our relationship. The second person will not forgive me or talk with me about the situation (and I still do not know the offense I committed against her). When someone comes to you asking for forgiveness, please listen to that person and be ready to forgive. We wrong others and they wrong us, it cannot be avoided. What can be avoided is not being willing to ask for forgiveness or being unwilling to forgive.

    Also, recognize that being hurt by something does not mean someone committed an offense against you. Too often I have found myself being hurt because my expectations were not reasonable or realistic, and not because someone committed an offense against me.

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    1. Dressing modestly would be another way to be somewhat counter-cultural by obeying Scripture’s instructions to Christians, but Christians aren’t instructed anywhere in Scripture to wear tassles and carry a Bible all the time.

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      1. Most people don’t know this, but Dueteronomy 22:12 and Numbers 15:37, show that we are instructed to wear tassles. Even Yahushua (Jesus) wore tassles as Luke 8:43-44 tells us. You should study this, it is interesting.
        While the Bible does not tell us to carry it around with us, it is a great testimony. After all, we aren’t ashamed of it, it is what we live by.☀️🌸🌻🌷

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      2. I have studied all of these passages- in context. the Deuteronomy and Numbers passages are not laws for Christians, they were laws for the Old Testament people of Israel. Numbers 15:38 even says so: “Speak to the people of Israel, and tell them to make tassels…”. New Testament Christians are not “the people of Israel”.

        Jesus, of course, obeyed Old Testament law because He was “born under the law” (Galatians 4:4) in order to fulfill the law (Matthew 5:17). All of the Old Testament ceremonial laws pointed ahead to Christ. Once He came, fulfilled the law, and instituted the new covenant of grace by His death, burial, and resurrection, the ceremonial laws no longer applied.

        I noticed your website seems to indicate that you’re in the Hebrew Roots movement. I would urge you to leave it immediately. It is an unbiblical cult that will only feed you twisted Scripture.

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  4. Ok, but if you read Galatians 3:22-29, it explains…
    Verse 29: “…And if ye be Christ’s, then ye are Abraham’s seed, and heir according to the promise.”
    So we are people of Israel.

    Yes, and Matthew 5:17-19 says this: “Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfill. For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and Earth pass, one jot or tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled.
    Whosoever therefore shall break one of the least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them,the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.”
    So what commandments? Throughout the Bible, even the New Testament, is full of verses saying to keep His commandments.
    What commandment are we to keep??? What are the “least of these” commandments???
    How are they ceremonial laws??? I don’t understand that.
    Sacrifice laws are ceremonial. Of course Yahushua (Jesus) is our sacrifice. So we don’t have to do that anymore.
    A movement!!! Wow! I didn’t know that I would be considered in a movement!!!
    I just want to find the truth.
    There are so many religions and churches that say different things. Which one do you suggest I believe????
    I see some truth in them all, yet also some lies. I don’t want to pick one to believe. I want to live my life for our Saviour!!! That is why I am studying the Bible. It is the authority on TRUTH right???
    I don’t understand how believing what the Bible says it an “unBiblical cult”.
    If my scripture is twisted, what scripture isn’t twisted???
    Can you please tell me???? I really want to know the truth!!!

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    1. I want to live my life for our Saviour!!! That is why I am studying the Bible. It is the authority on TRUTH right???

      Yes! And that is awesome. It sounds like you have a lot of great questions and that it would really be beneficial for someone to come alongside you and help you out (more help than I can give you in the comments section of a blog). So, the first thing we need to do is get you plugged into a doctrinally sound local church where you can be taught the truth that you’re looking for. Why don’t you drop me an e-mail (MichelleLesley1@yahoo.com) and let me know what city/state you live in and I’ll do my best to get you connected to a good church near you.

      (Regarding my remarks about the Hebrew Roots Movement – there is an official, formal cult that goes by that name, and it sounded from your blog like you were part of that group. If you’re not, that’s good. I wasn’t saying you, personally, are a “movement” or that you, personally, are intentionally twisting Scripture. Sorry for the confusion.)

      Looking forward to hearing from you! :0)

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thank you for your help. But I do not like to tell strangers where I live.(no offense) I personally know some great people in different churches, who I respect, but believe things that are clearly not in scripture.
        The churches here are loud noisy rock concerts who tell you to tithe, love your neighbor, and enjoy the rest of your week. They are so full of traditions, that it is hard to see what is from the Bible and what is someone ideas.
        For years…church after church… No complete truth. I just want to follow the Bible and live my life for our Saviour.
        Just simply living for Him, with His Word, the Bible as my guide.
        I can assure you that I am not in any movement. That is the problem in this day and age. Because of what certain people do and believe, you can be easily placed in the same category as them if you believe one little thing.
        I have come to the conclusion that every one, personal and organized groups (churches and such), all believe some truths. But no one is perfect and there are many lies everywhere.
        I don’t want to put Yahweh in a box. He warns us many times in the Bible about false doctrines and teachers. I don’t want to blindly follow any one man or church.
        Yahweh gave us the Bible, the authority on TRUTH, this is what I live by, this is what I will test everything by.
        So, I have counselors from Catholic, Baptist, Torah followers, Lutheran, and a few others. I respect them as fellow followers of our Saviour. Some of what they say is true. I check it by the Bible. Some is twisted lies. Must be careful.
        What would be great, is if you discussed and answered questions pertaining to the scriptures, as you have with Christmas, on your blog.
        As I study, I am praying and writing posts to show what YAHWEH (Original Hebrew name of God) has shown me in His Word. It’s so simple. And I look for guidance, council, and correction in my beliefs.
        I may still email you.
        By the way, what does “doctrinally sound” mean??? How much more can you get then just what the Bible says, instead of what man says???
        I am a truth-seeker and a follower of Yahweh!!!
        Thank you!!!🌸☺️🌻🌷🌱☀️🌸

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      2. Joy, I appreciate that you say you’re seeking truth, but I cannot disciple you through the comments section of a blog, and God doesn’t want me to. That’s your pastor’s, elders’, and teachers’ duty and responsibility. They can spend the time with you, face to face, in sermons, Bible classes, and the one on one discipleship that you need.

        If you’re truly seeking to obey God, you need to start with obeying Hebrews 10:24-25. Christ commands Christians to be faithful members of a local church. No church is absolutely perfect, but there are thousands that are biblical and striving to follow God’s Word as closely as possible. If you are really studying God’s Word, you already know that it’s God’s plan for you to be joined to a local church so you can receive biblical teaching and instruction and get all your questions answered. Church membership is not optional. It is a command of Christ. I would encourage you to read my article: Basic Training: 7 Reasons Church is Not Optional and Non-Negotiable for Christians

        It’s fine if you don’t want to tell me where you live. I totally understand. Check out the “Searching for a new church?” tab at the top of this page. There are lots of church search engines and resources that can help you find a solid church near you.

        I would also encourage you to read my article Basic Training: The Gospel, for two reasons. First, refusing to join with a local church is a sign that someone is not saved (1 John 2:19). Second, you have some wonky theological beliefs that lead me to suspect you may not understand the biblical gospel.

        Again, I urge you to check out those resources and find a good local church. I would be disobeying God’s Word if I tried to give you what only the church can.

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      3. Dear Madam,
        I am sorry if you feel obligated to discipline me. I have elders and teachers, and my parents to disciple me.
        There is no church in the Bible, it is the “ecclesia” meaning the “called out ones”, the true believers.
        It is not a building,”YAHWEH does not dwell in temples made with hands.”( Acts 17:24)
        You are correct, we do need fellowship. I have had a delightful time with other believers, studying, fellowshipping, and praising Yahweh. We are all at different places on our walk, so getting together, exhorting one another and growing in truth is much needed.
        Christ commands us to assemble ourselves together and seek out His truth yes. But He says nothing about an organizated church, as we have today.
        I have been thankfully blessed to receive instruction and teaching,that I always check with the Bible to be sure that it is true.
        I have come to understand the gospel more than I ever have. Now, instead of skipping over all those “commandment” or “law” words throughout the Bible, because the “church” said the “law is done away with”, I am able to read and understand what it really says, what YAHWEH says, not what someone told me it is supposed to say.
        What more authority does a “church” have than you according to the Bible??? How would you be disobeying YAHWEH’S Word by…well what is it that you need to give me again???
        I don’t mean to frustrated you or be disrespectful in any way.
        It just seems as if churches and the world are merging together, and there are few who truly seek to follow YAHWEH.
        We are nearly in the end times, as the Bible says, there are few. Do you believe that somehow in the future, churches will be crushed and persecuted??? It seems like the “churches” are being slowly deceived into becoming the persecuters themselves.( Just try not going to church for a few months, then go. The changes that have taken place are shocking. No one who goes to church regularly would notice. Like the frog in the pot of water)
        It is sad, yet the truth. And I have found that there are two sides to every thing. The truth is usual in the middle. Unless of course it’s between YAHWEH and evil.
        🌸Blessings to you!!!🌸☀️🌻

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      4. Joy- If you refuse to be joined to a local church, there’s nothing more I can do to help you and this conversation has become fruitless, I’m afraid. You are being disobedient to Scripture and asking me (whether you realize it or not) to do the same by stepping into the place that belongs to your pastor, elders, and church by answering all of these questions that it is their responsibility – to you and to God – to answer.

        It would take far more hours than I have to explain and correct all of the theological errors and misunderstandings you have. You are not capable of comparing what you hear to Scripture and discerning whether or not it is biblical because you do not have even a rudimentary understanding of the Scripture you’re comparing things to, which is evident when you make patently absurd statements like “there is no church in the Bible.” The New Testament is the story of the establishment of the church. It doesn’t get more basic than that, which is only further proof that you need to be in a good church where you can receive biblical teaching and correction.

        This will be my concluding comment in this conversation.

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