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Life is full of chaos... constant changes and decisions. Even as Christians, everywhere we look is someone trying to tell us how we should think, how we should act, and what we should believe. So how does a young Christian or for that matter any Christian know what to believe or how to act?
Well, the standard answer is the scriptures, of course, but in reality that is only part of the answer. The truth is that most Christians pattern their Christian walk after what they were taught by their parents or church, what they hear from the pulpit, and the messages they get through the media. Searching the scriptures to ascertain the truth takes time, and as many discover, often requires a spiritual maturity to discern.
The real answer is a bit of all the above. We need to study our scriptures because only knowing them will allow us to discern when we are being told or taught something that is incorrect. Our spiritual elders, whether they are speaking from the pulpit or just speaking from experience can help us with that discernment, but only if what they are teaching also lines up with those same scriptures. Now that doesn&039;t sound that complicated, but in reality, it is. It is because most Christians learned from their elders, who learned from their elders, and all of it is mixed with a big part of what our society has taught them is right or wrong. -So, you are thinking what is so wrong with that?
Have you ever given much thought to your belief system? -I don t want to confuse anyone, so I will clarify that further by saying that our faith is only part of our belief system. Your belief system is the actual set of precepts from which you live your daily life, those that govern your thoughts, words, and actions. Without these precepts you could not function, so in order to understand who we really are, we all must understand what we believe, how we think, how we act, and why.
What we need to be seeking, brethren, is balance. Balance in all things. We are trying to duplicate Christ&039;s walk in a world of extremes. People&039;s thoughts and actions are governed by the society that they live in, and how they were raised. What we must seek to do is slow down... slow down and think before we make decisions, and before we take any action. Slow down and think about why we believe as we do, and act as we act. Is what we are thinking actually what the scriptures are teaching, or what we were taught they meant? Is how we treat others how the scriptures say we should treat them, or how we were taught we should be treating them?
If that doesn&039;t make sense to you, then you are probably the one I am writing this for. In some countries they have a caste system (or at least used to). People who were raised to believe that certain people are better than others. Some societies through their use of media and peer pressure teach the same things. We, as Christians, are taught through the scriptures that Christ cleanses us of our sins, and we become a new creation (new people). -So the question must be, do we look upon fellow Christians as they are, and as they are becoming... or judge them as society does, by their past?
Christ expects us to act as He would act, but to do so requires us to develop Christian discernment. -Is the lady in church with the wicked past looking to put it behind her, or to justify it? Did the deacon in your church slip into sexual immorality one time, and ask forgiveness for it, or just expect that everyone would overlook it because of the big check he puts in the offering plate every Sunday? BALANCE!
Balance is exactly what it sounds like. We must weight what we are being told and taught, versus what the scriptures actual say. (don&039;t take someone&039;s word for it... check it out yourself!) -I will tell you in advance that learning to do this is not going to make you popular. People are creatures of habit... and they are comfortable in their box... comfortable in the belief system that they were raised with. Change is hard, and most people see no reason for the change to start with. -Which makes the messenger a little unpopular...
If you are one of those who understand that growing as a Christian is always going to require change, and where there is no change, there is no growth... then you have already started your own growth. Balance is just another step in that process.
This series is about how to learn to apply what we are learning as Christians in practical applications (uses). Each of our journey&039;s as Christians is a life-long journey, but as with all things we have to want to learn to grow. Our goal, as it should be, is to stand before the throne on the Judgment Day, and hear our Lord say, "Welcome into my joy, good and faithful servant!" (Matthew 25:23 paraphrased)