Normalcy, The Great Seducer…

The issue of normalcy has been at the forefront of my mind for many years now. However, it has only been recently that these things have begun to work themselves from the place of mere thoughts in my mind into reality. It has been a goal of mine since I was about 15 to “be different”. I have come to discover that God has wired me to be a bit rebellious, which can be a very dangerous thing if not harnessed for the Kingdom & His purposes (Something I struggle daily to grasp). Being normal has always seemed so boring to me. Why would I want to be, do, look, act, work, perform, & love like everyone else does? Where is the adventure in that? There may not be adventure in it, but it is much “easier” to be “normal”. Therein, lies the seduction…

By nature, I suppose, we choose what is easier over what is “right”, or obedient. I mean, it is much easier to go along with the “flow” of the majority, or “status quo”, right? For example, it takes much more effort to eat organic & prepare meals at home than it does to swing by Subway to grab a $5 foot long. It is SO much “easier” to mentally & physically “escape” the busyness of the day by watching hours of TV on the couch than it is to engage those we love in healthy conversation about life. It is much “easier” to fit in with the “crowd” by having a “real job” (9-5, vacation time, set hours, health insurance, nice salary, retirement, etc.) than it is to do what you love doing – even if it means less money, or the risk of “appearing” unsuccessful. We could go on and on with examples…(I’d love to hear some that come to your mind as well)

The more places I go the more encouraged I become. I meet people everywhere who refuse to be seduced into the normal life. They are insistent upon pursuing what they feel are the important things in life. The beauty of that is we all must choose for ourselves what is important to us, and what we value based upon the activity of the Gospel in our lives. Then, we mustn’t judge the things others choose as important so long as they have heard God’s voice and are in His will for their lives. There is much freedom in this, as well as a lot of room for Jesus to move in our lives as we make ourselves available to Him for obedience.

Perhaps Normalcy is the enemy’s great tactic in keeping the Bride of Christ too busy to ready herself for the return of Her Groom? It is what robs us of the Joy we could have in Christ through our pursuit of what is in line with His kingdom. It is what causes us to live a life of doubt and fear, unfulfilled. This Great Seducer grabs us, and pulls us in early on. It conditions our minds against TRUTH, and the things of God.

I do not find anything normal about Jesus and those who followed Him in the scriptures. In fact, they were quite the opposite of the rest of their fellow man. However, they did not choose to be abnormal for the sake of being different. They chose to be different so as to fully surrender their lives to Jesus, and be completely available to Him. Does normalcy reduce our availability to the Holy Spirit’s leading? There have been many attempts to pull God, His Kingdom, and His purposes into our “Normalcy box”. There are a lot of “normal Christians” out there. They all look alike, dress alike, talk alike, do the same activities, drink the same beverages, follow the same laws (scary – see Galatians), keep the same traditions/rituals, follow the same “leaders” (Often times not Jesus), spend their money on the same things, have similar “time cards” of availability, and have the same lifelong insecurities that Jesus longs to set us free from. As believers, we should be set apart from the world. I would submit that very few, if any, of the above things are on the same list Jesus holds in how He desires His children to be “different” from the world. There are also similarities we should share with our brothers & sisters in Christ. Again, I feel that very few on Jesus’ list can be found in the above. I have no desire to be normal in any sense – worldly, or Christian – both are a far too incomplete picture of what Jesus paints when He speaks of life to the fullest, for the purpose of His Kingdom, as an adopted Child of God.

May we pursue Him, and obedience to Him. Let us not swing the pendulum back over to the other end, allowing our “rebellion” or rejection of what’s normal to become our idol. Both are dangerous, and not pleasing to Jesus. This is a mere plea with myself, and you all to insist upon removing the “normal” things in our lives that steal our uniqueness in Christ. May our hearts cease to lust after what is easy and normal, and may we be seduced by the one true lover of our souls. May that love set us free, and cause us to come alive. May this be what “sets us apart” as those who follow Jesus. Thank you Jesus.

5 thoughts on “Normalcy, The Great Seducer…

  1. I know this wasn’t the point of your message, but it got me thinking. Do you think that a Jesus-follower can be as effective if they have a full-time job? While I don’t think it’s “bad” to have one, I wonder if it would be a better option to not work full-time? What do you think?
    Also, thanks for being honest with your struggles with this! 🙂 Love to hear about what’s going on in Austin!!!

  2. Woah! I ABSOLUTELY think a follower of Jesus can be just as effective if not MORE effective in a full time job in the world. Would love to talk to you about this more sometime. This is coming from someone who worked on staff at mega churches for 5 years and felt strangled from actually reaching out to any lost people or making any disciples in a reproducible way. However, another aspect of this that you might be touching on is the fact a person might just live a VERY simple life so they don’t need much income to survive which frees them up be more obedient to Jesus. It’s all about calling and obedience for the individual person. =) Any thoughts on that?

  3. Hey Aaron,
    Thanks for sharing your thoughts and taking the time to get them down on paper. I strongly agree with your point of how normalcy can steal us from intimacy with the Holy Spirit and our God. As pilgrims set for the “Celestial City,” our path is not one often travelled or spoken well of, but it is by our bold and revolutionary actions we inspire others to find and follow this lover of our souls 🙂

  4. Thanks for responding. 🙂 I appreciate it. I worked full-time for 2 years at a traditional church and I know what you mean.It’s so difficult to be able to connect sometimes. However, sometimes it’s difficult balancing a full-time job with using free-time, I don’t want to say “productively,” but I can’t think of another word. (I hope that makes sense.)

    I definitely agree that this is based on the individual and their relationship with God (not a strict rule). The verses I had running through my mind were 1 Corithians where Paul talks about how it might be better for some not to marry, but to be single. I don’t know if the same could apply here, but that’s what I applied it to. 😛

    This has just been something I’ve been thinking on. I work full-time at a daycare (to pay bills) and part-time at a restaurant (more of ministry than money). There are just days that I get off of work at the daycare and I don’t want to do anything else except go home. Yet, part of me regrets that because I feel like there’s so much of ministry that I’m missing. I guess I’ve just been weighing the pros and cons.

    • Good thoughts Noelle I totally hear ya. I sense two other things at play here. First, the full time job must be something you love & are passionate about. Second, either way, job is ministry – no dichotomy. I’d say you gotta work full time at a job you love and allow your ministry to flow through that-or work less (part time to pay bills) to free up more time for non work ministry time-make sense?

      Aaron Snow 817.808.2520 Sent from my iPhone

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