Standing Against the Current: 4 Strategies to Help You Stay the Course of Truth and Godliness
The world and its views are like a current.
One sweeping us all along. Telling us what to believe, what to think, what to value. Defining beauty, success, and worth.
I remember in 6th grade, a friend wore pedal-pushers to school (capris). I thought they were quite strange and funny-looking. We all did. Yet within a year most of my classmates and I were wearing them ourselves and feeling stylish. The world told me to like them, so I do.
While fashion trends are usually harmless, the same concept is at work in more alarming areas of our lives. Like that thing called sin.
The world is pulling, pulling, pulling us to accept things into our lives, speech, actions and attitudes that are far from God’s beautiful, eternal truth.
…you were dead in your transgressions and sins, in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world.. gratifying the cravings of our flesh and following its desires and thoughts …But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions… Ephesians 2:1-5 (emphasis added)
Even though we have this new life in Christ, it’s easy to be carried along.
This got me thinking about how, practically we as women, wives and mothers can withstand this tide?
Through reflecting on my own life, I came up with a few thoughts on what grounds me.
4 Strategies to Help You Stand Against the Current
1. Read the Bible
“Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.” Romans 12:2 NIV (emphasis added)
Why does our mind need to be renewed and transformed, but for the fact that we are being pulled to conform to the world’s ways?
And while we may feel strong and excited to live differently soon after our conversion, that current will chip away at our resolve and confuse our thinking unless we take the time to return to our unshakable authority, God’s inspired word.
There is no greater avenue to allow for this renewal than by opening the Bible for yourself. It’s words are alive. Read them and your soul will know the truth of that alive-ness.
If you don’t know where to start, check out 21 Days to Developing the Most Life-Changing Habit Ever: Daily Time with God
2. Find friends that sharpen you, and be intentional
Who surrounds you?
We all need other Christians, those running the same race, as the primary influence in our lives. That’s how we spur one another on toward greater godliness. That’s how we remind one another of truth. That’s the Body of Christ, which is God’s glorious design for His church.
With that being said, even your friends who consider themselves Christ-followers may not be influencing you in a good direction. Maybe there is a lack of “intentional living” between all of you. Maybe some of you are prone to laziness or selfishness or gossip. It’s hard to live differently when this is the only model you see and the only advice you receive.
This is were the world’s current and the pull of sin is strongest. When we trust friends to influence our thinking and lives who are not pursuing God wholeheartedly, the result is a bogged-down-ness that leaves us confused and stuck.
Take a hard look at your circles and pray that God would bring an “iron-sharpening” relationship into your life. When He does, cherish and invest it in for what it’s worth.
“As iron sharpens iron, so a friend sharpens and friend.” Proverbs 27:17
For more on how to make friendships more intentional read Intentional Friendships: When, Why and How to Start an Accountability Group
3. Invest in a local church
A local church, when founded on the Bible (many churches, grievously, are not), is essential to helping shape and maintain a godly worldview. It’s a place were we have our eyes pulled back to truth weekly, to be refreshed by teaching and community, and to be served and serve others.
For more on finding a good church read How to Not Be Mislead by Wrong Bible Teaching
This weekly stopping point is wonderfully reorienting. If you’re not investing yourself in a local church, you are more susceptible to the world’s deception, whether or not you realize it. Make this a priority in your life if it’s not already.
4. Read things that turn your mind toward Jesus
I am not an avid reader, but I do love following along with the blogs of those I respect and admire, those who are on a path I want for myself too.
For a list of my favorite blogs, click here.
And I do love reading books by wise people, who have a deepness with God that calls to me. Through their words, I learn to find that same deepness. I learn to think differently than I otherwise would have. I learn about new ideas, new ways of knowing God, that those in my life could not have shown me.
Some books that are currently impacting my worldview and renewing my mind (and that I highly recommend) are:
Jesus Calling by Sarah Young (so accessible and life-changing for anyone)
The Gentle Ways of the Beautiful Woman by Anne Ortlund (talk about Biblical womanhood!)
Do you feel the world’s current pulling you or confusing you? How do you stand against the pull?