The Rise of Casual Christianity
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The Rise of Casual Christianity

Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you react to it.

The Rise of Casual Christianity

I'm as guilty as anyone when it comes to being a two-faced Christian. Live by the Book on Sundays, yet gotta fit in with the friends all other 6 days of the week. This two-faced, haphazard mindset of Christianity is one that is becoming more and more prominent as time goes along. I know, this isn't anything new or groundbreaking. I'm aware of that. The reason why I'm writing this is to share my recent experiences on this rather prominent subject matter of being a casual Christian.

Short preface: I grew up in Waco, in the "Bible Belt", in a Christian home, church every Sunday, blah blah blah you've heard this a million times I'm sure. Point is, it was easy to be a Christian because I grew up in a great environment. You see, the thing is, nothing really, and I mean reallllly prepares you (at least nothing did for me) to be a true, completely devoted Christian on your own. What I mean by "Christian on your own" is being independent, being able to choose whether or not you want to go to church on Sunday, choosing who to associate yourself with, basically choosing a brand new identity. And you know what the perfect opportunity for all of this "newness" is? You guessed it.


College can either amplify and renew your relationship with Christ or fizzle it out to nothing. It's quite literally totally up to you. What I've come to realize within the past several months of my freshman year of college is that I've been guilty of being a casual Christian virtually my whole life. Am I saying I've been a terrible person? No, but what I mean by this is that I haven't been "walking the walk and talking the talk", you know, that super casual cliche saying that everyone brushes under the rug? Well it rings true.

See, the thing I have come to realize (and again this is nothing new; it's all realizations of my own) is for those who are not Christians, for them to see people who call themselves "Christians" or "followers of Christ" who act literally NO different then the rest of the crowd says a lot. The only difference a non-Christian sees is that their Christian friend gets up early on Sunday mornings and they don't. That's it. Is that not true? I mean think about how different you really act and the choices that you make or don't make. I'm not saying this to ridicule, I'm saying this to make you think. You can retweet all the bible verses you want, put as many bible verses in your bios as you can think of, but none of that really matters if you don't put meaning behind it. One thing I've come to realize is the choices you make show so much about a person. My momma always told me that life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you react to it (I know my mom didn't come up with that, Charles Swindoll did). Let me say that again.

Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you react to it.

Think about it for a second.

Everybody has a choice. There's always a choice to make, in everything. You know what I believe to be the 3 biggest mistakes that casual Christians make?

Alcohol, Sex, and Porn.

Yeah, I'm sure you've heard that before. You probably know that those things are very very bad and to never partake in any of those things. But doesn't everyone intellectually know that those things are bad? I mean, I've never heard someone say, "In college, I want to become a raging alcoholic and rely on getting drunk to fulfill my sadness or loneliness until it becomes a major problem!" or "I want to have sex with many different girls (or guys if you're a girl) so I can have a miserable, failing marriage down the road!". I don't think you've heard anyone say that either.

But you know what I think is the number 1 reason people still choose to go down these paths? You know why people look to Sex, Alcohol, and Porn to the point of addiction?


That's right. It's what I've seen happen to many people, friends, family, and acquaintances alike. I recently visited my grandparents to talk about all of this that's been on my mind (also, if you have the luxury of having grandparents, give them a call or a visit, it means a lot more than you think). My grandpa said something that really stuck out, and that was

"Temptation feeds on insecurity."

For example:

1. Getting drunk. Why? It helps people forget about rough history in their life or a deep sadness from a break-up or death, or something along those lines. Some people feel super awkward in social situations, so they have to get drunk to become more social. Others do it so they can hook up and not care or remember what the other person looks like. Also, peer pressure. Some people just think it's the COOLEST thing to get plastered with your bros (or gals) every. single. weekend. *FRAT SNAPS*. Or because it's the "college thing to do. It's just what you do in college." In reality, the more you get drunk, the more alcohol you need to get drunk again, which can lead to alcoholism, or an insurmountable regret the next morning from a mistake. Alcohol will always lead to something bad unless you choose to stop. Seriously.

2. Sex. Why? Maybe a bad break up and someone's feeling lonely. Maybe because someone hasn't had a significant other in a long time feels super insecure about it and hooks up with anything thats considered above a 0.5 on a scale of 10.0. Premarital sex is literally the most selfish thing a person can do. Here's something to think about: Premarital sex is literally using another human being's body for your own pleasure.

Let me say that again. Premarital sex is literally using another human being's body for your own personal pleasure.

You might contradict by saying that "if a couple is in love than it's more than just pleasure!" But is it really? See, God didn't create sex for pleasure, as you probably know. He created it for a married couple to form as one. Mark 10:8 - "and the two will become one flesh. So they are no longer two, but one flesh. " I don't see a 'casual hookup' becoming one flesh, nor do I see a young unmarried couple who partake in sex often becoming one flesh. To have a successful marriage, the relationship needs to be focused on God, and nothing else. So if you tell me that a young couple who's living together / having sex are doing it out of love before marriage, they're contradicting what I just said. They're doing it for pleasure and nothing else. They have not formed as one in the covenant of marriage, and the relationship will eventually crumble. Guaranteed.

3. Porn. I think the reason people fall to porn is pretty obvious. It's to fulfill their sexual desires that they wish they had. Simply put, if a man is addicted to porn, he will hide that from his girlfriend/wife. Unless a man has stopped, I'm more than confident a male won't tell his wife/girlfriend he watches porn unless he's doing it as a confession and is trying to stop. Porn is like cancer and it will consume you like no other. You'll hide it from your future mate, and from what I hear, it sounds like your significant other will always find out. Yet again, leads to a crumbling of a relationship, and destroys your relationship with Christ every time you partake in it. There is literally no positive outcome from it.

All of this to say that our generation, now more than ever, is succumbing to temporary pleasure and earthly things. It's clearly getting worse. So you can either be a part of it, or take a stand for what you know is right.

A lot of different rough situations from several different aspects of my life have occurred to me within the past couple of months, and it honestly has been one piling on top of the other. I know that I can either take the path that covers up the pain and insecurity of these events, or go to the One that I know to fall to in a time of need. I want to strive to become a man that has absolutely nothing to hide; to be a person that is completely vulnerable, to have nothing to hold back and to be on a path for the Lord. And am I there yet? Absolutely not.

Some may read this article and think "Who are you to write this article? I've seen you make mistakes just like anybody else." And you'd be absolutely write. I've made mistakes. I'm not writing this article to show how great of a person I am, or to boast about my recent realizations. I'm not saying I've completely changed out of nowhere. I've done thinks that I regret, undoubtedly. And I will continue to make mistakes every single day, as will you. But I'm not striving for perfection. Being imperfect is how the Lord created us, and that's why he loves us.

I'm striving to be a Man of God, to be a great husband, a great father one day. I recently drove up to College Station for a Breakaway service, where my favorite pastor, Ben Stuart preaches. Having no prior knowledge of what he was going to talk about, he spoke about the matters that I've been thinking about and having deep, deep conversations with some of my best friends about lately. He talked about how if you're looking for a significant other to "be your everything, to fill you up", then you're going to destroy that relationship. You can't fully love someone until you have the love of Jesus Christ. Your future wife or husband will not be perfect. They will make mistakes that will disappoint you. It's a part of being imperfect. If you look to them for fulfillment and then they disappoint, you will be crushed. But if you have the fulfillment of Jesus Christ, then you will be able to maintain a healthy relationship, make healthy decisions, and leave your insecurities behind you. I know that sounds so simple, but seriously. It's true stuff, man.

It's up to you how you handle your problems and insecurities. Go ahead, flee to the bottle, a hookup, a dirty website. But I promise, you will be disappointed every single time. Like I said, I'm not a poet, I'm no pastor. I'm a 19 year old, 2nd semester freshman in college who has no idea what he wants to do with his life. But I do know one thing, and that is that if I always look towards Jesus, it will always be the best decision I will make. I've gone to worldly pleasures, and I truly believe that every single person will go to these temporary pleasures at some point in their life, and they will leave you feeling empty, every single time.

You can continue to claim to be a Christian and go to church/youth/college services every single day, but I promise you that you will never be fulfilled until you know the love of Jesus Christ for yourself.

Like I said earlier, I am nowhere near where I want to be in terms of my walk with Jesus. I haven't fully comprehended nor felt the complete love and grace that Christ has to offer me. But I do know one thing: I've realized what it takes to get there. And I ask that if you're struggling with being a two-sided Christian, if you start being honest with yourself and choosing God over worldly pleasure, you will feel so much better because of the grace of God. I hope you take what I've had to say and really think about it. Here's another thought I was recently told: Would you choose to make the poor decisions you make if Jesus was standing in the room, looking right at you? It's kind of a weird thought, I know, but think about it.

I'm gonna end this journal/article or whatever with a quote from a book I'm reading by Andy Stanley titled "The New Rules for Love, Sex, and Dating." This quote doesn't apply just for dating or love to me. This applies to all aspects of my life, in terms of who I want my parents to view me as, who I want my friends to view me as, and most importantly, who I know Jesus will view me as. Here it is, and really think about this:

"Are you the person that the person you are looking for is looking for?"

Thanks for reading.

"Here's my heart, Lord. Here's my life, Lord. Speak what is true."

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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