Growing up in church, I thought I had just about everything figured out about being a Christian.
That all changed for me one day when I visited a church that was much different than the straight-laced church I grew up in. It was a place where people dressed and acted the same on Sunday as they did the rest of the week. It was a place where it was OK to be honest and open about doubts and struggles. There was even an atmosphere of excitement and celebration that was expressed during worship.
All of this was very new to me. There was such of contrast in this group of believers that I had to question much of what I believed about being a Christian. What I discovered is that some of my “Christian beliefs” were actually misguided and inspired more by worldly religion than the Word of God.
It’s obvious that non-Christians have some misconceptions regarding Christianity, but often those who grew up in church, do too. Here are just a few of the lies I used to believed about being a Christian:
1. Your Behavior Affects God’s Love For You.
With all the rules we set up for ourselves, it’s easy to think following them is the way to get God’s approval and love. But the truth is you don’t have to try to use your behavior to earn God’s love. He loves you despite your behavior.
Christ died for us while we were still sinners (Romans 5:8). God’s love for you isn’t based on what you do or don’t do, it’s based on His Son Jesus and your decision to accept Him!
2. Church is a Weekly Event and Just a Building.
Living in the Bible Belt, going to church can sometimes be seen as just something that everyone does. Worshipping God is often compartmentalized and sectioned off from the rest of our week. There is this idea that every Sunday you have to dress up and polish your external appearance and behavior.
But God is interested in your heart, not your outfit. He looks at the internal of man, not the external (1 Samuel 16:7).
Church is also frequently viewed as building and not a body. In reality, we should see the Church as a Body that just so happens to meet in a building. The Bible talks about the Church as a living and breathing thing, not just a meeting that takes place each week with some singing and preaching (Ephesians 2:19-22). We weren’t meant to love an event, we were meant to love people.
3. You Shouldn’t Express Your Struggles or Doubts.
Sometimes the Christian life is hard. At times, there are no easy answers or explanations. Instead of suppressing our doubts and struggles, we should admit them to God and ask others to help us walk through them.
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