I read an intriguing article today in Christianity Today called "Lite of the World". This an excerpt of that article:
Unfortunately, the predominant energy within American Christianity is in what I call "pop Christianity" or "Christianity-Lite." This brand of faith tastes great but is less filling, and wherever it prevails, it is a source of impoverishment of faith and culture. Christianity, when it takes on these characteristics, is an imposter. People are seeking the way home to God, but pop Christianity cannot provide it. Yet for many today, Christianity-Lite is all they know, and the consequences are serious for both the religious and the irreligious.
That's some pretty heavy dialogue, but it's what God has also been saying to me in my quiet time. I'm speaking at The Edge's Youth Encounter in July. It's a pretty amazing national conference where teens will come to worship, to have fun, and to connect with Christ. The message that God is placing on my heart for this conference is that He's more than a best- friend-God. Yes, he's there. Yes, he's our friend. But He's also God, creator of the Universe, shaper of lives, worthy of praise. He's worthy of obedience.
You see, the American definition of a best-friend God is often different than the friend-God described in the Bible.
He becomes a convenience. He's there when you need him, but okay with it when you don't. He's there when you are in distress, but out of sight when you want to make decisions that are far from his instructions for your life. He's like a warm, comfy sweatshirt that you can pull out, but cram under the bed and forget about it until you are cold again.
Is that what following Christ means? I know that God is a friend to us, but are we true friends to him?
In the Bible we find disciples willing to follow Christ through good times, hard times, and to learn from him, spend time with him, and allow every facet of their lives to be altered by their relationship with him. Lite of the world or Light of the world? Such a great question, and maybe this is a discussion we need to start, not just for you guys, but for my life too, and with all those who love him.
Just my two cents, but I'd love to hear what you think. . .
Suzie Eller (T. Suzanne)