All too common

A friend of mine once wrote, “I have been bludgeoned recently by the common.” I thought that was an extraordinary phrase. That seems to be the story of life. We have lofty thoughts, dreams, and goals and then the common things come in and beat us down.
But it is not just the story of life, it is the story of many Christian’s spiritual journey. They start out with dreams of being holy (set apart and pure) and they end up common (just like everyone else).
It is easy to be beaten into submission by the common. As long as we submit to the common, no one bothers us. When we stand and choose to be different, we face opposition. The world says bow down. If we remain standing, we face the trial of being different.
Remember the three young men from the book of Daniel? They decided they would not bow down to the idol set up for worship during their time in exile. The society did not appreciate their decision and tried to kill them in a furnace of fire.
Most Christians would think they did something wrong if they faced that kind of opposition. They would think God was no longer with them. That is because many churches have settled for the common. Instead of saying, ‘Yes, we are different,’ they say, ‘See we are just like everyone else.’ They take the road of least resistance. Many Christians have taken that same road of least resistance. When it became too difficult to resist money, sex, and power, they simply gave into the common and quit being different.
In the city of Austin, TX is a great bookstore called BookPeople. In that store, they sell a T-shirt that says, ‘Keep Austin Weird.’ It is a testimony to the desire of the locals to keep Austin unique as it faces growth and the pressure to conform that comes from growth.
I can’t help but wish that Christians would develop this weird mentality again. The early Christians had it. They called themselves aliens and strangers on the earth. Wouldn’t it be great if we were intend to keep Christianity weird as we lived in this world? Wouldn’t it be great if we avoided the tyranny of the normal and the clubs of the common?


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