“And if someone asks about your Christian hope, always be ready to explain it. But do this in a gentle and respectful way.” (1 Pet 3:15–16 NLT)
During the 1st Century it was pretty easy to stand out as a follower of Jesus. Persecution was rampant and commonplace. It would have been tempting to blend in and avoid the hassle.
And yet those first century Jesus followers didn’t blend in. In fact, not only did they cling to their different way of living, they were prepared to explain it at any moment. Even their words of explanation were counter to their surrounding culture: they were filled with gentleness and respect.
I sometimes wonder if we’re prepared to explain the hope that we have in Christ today. To be honest, I haven’t heard a lot of great “ready answers,” and that includes me. I’m working on that (see 4 Suggestions for a Ready Answer). But if we’re really Jesus followers, why don’t we take this need to have a ready answer more seriously?
Because no one is asking!
I think this is the bigger problem modern Christians face. Are we living in a way that makes people want to ask questions? And what does that even look like?
At WordServe Church we have a tag line that states, “Life is Different.” We believe that as we live a life for Jesus, it will be counter to the culture around us. That makes our lives different! But is being different enough, or is there more to living differently in Christ? Let’s examine some of the layers of living differently.
1. Is being different enough? Anyone can be different. Get a facial tattoo, dye your hair bright pink; you’ll be different, and you’ll get noticed. But will people want to ask you about it? Or will they just think you’re weird?
We can’t just live differently, we must live questionably. People should want to know more.
2. Is our goal simply to get people to ask questions? Yes… and no. Yes we want people to ask questions and want to know more. But do we want them to ask just to satisfy their curiosity? Or do we want them to ask to satisfy a longing or desire?
Those who want to satisfy a curiosity probably don’t have any intention of changing their lives. But those who want to satisfy a longing are asking because they want to know how they might attain something they recognize they don’t have. In other words…
People who are curious want to know. People who ask with a longing want to become.
If we want people to ask out of longing, we must faithfully and deliberately model a life that is filled with Jesus… a life that exudes peace, grace, and above all the love of Jesus.
Lives that are different get noticed. Lives that create curiosity inform. But lives that create longing transform.
So, is WordServe Church changing our tag line? Probably not… after all, who would attend a church whose tag line is, “Life is Questionable?”
Join in the conversation… how will you live questionably? What questions does this raise for you?