Standing Against the Current: 4 Strategies to Help You Stay the Course of Truth and Godliness


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standing against the current

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 thoughtsBut 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

Develop the habit of 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

intentional friendships 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 Pursuit of God by AW Tozer (essays for the philosophical thinker… if you’re like me, you may find yourself re-reading a lot). It appears you can get it on Kindle for free here.

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?

 

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Comments

  1. Kelly Howard says:

    May He richly bless you also.

  2. Kelly Howard says:

    You couldn’t be more wrong. Messiah restored us to the 10 and fulfilled the Levitical Law. Our Covenant with Messiah is to walk as He walked and that is to obey His Commandments, as HE said we will do if we love Him. All you have given me is junk spewed from a pulpit that is pure lies! This is the VERY REASON we need the Holy Spirit and NOT church. Now just turn right over to the book of Revelation and see what plays out to those who KEEP and those who don’t. You completely misunderstand Scripture because you let someone do your thinking for you and now you are ensnared by religion and are completely deceived! If you truly love Messiah, which I believe you do, please take off those religious glasses and let the Holy Spirit help you see the truth! This is coming from a husband and wife team who have been pastor, youth pastor, minister of music and evangelists who have even had a Sunday morning radio show. I KNOW for a fact that what you have commented is regurgitated seminary rubbish. Yes, Messiah fulfilled the need for the Levitical sacrifices and all that went with them, for the physical aspect, as we now do it within for WE, each one, have an inward Temple that must be cleansed and maintained. Peter himself said how difficult and confusing Paul’s words were and if you don’t understand them I GUARANTEE that his words will lead you astray. Abba is NOT the author of confusion and Satan loves what Paul has unintentionally done. Paul’s words sound almost crazy as he says we need to keep the Law and then says we don’t! The key is understanding which LAW he is speaking of and that it is different almost every time. This is what King James was trying to accomplish and did it very well. You do realize that King James was a horrible man, right? Just some simple searching will leave you to see that he wasn’t a hero, by any means, for giving us his screwed up version of Scripture. I employed you to research ALL that you think you know for YOURSELF, and let the Holy Spirit lead you to the truth. I won’t comment again. I am only trying to wake you up. I truly do not care if you openly make me a fool either. I only hope to plant a seed to bring you out of religion.

    • Kelly Howard says:

      **emplore, not employed. Auto correct is demonic, haha.

    • Kelly, I believe that all of scripture is God breathed and useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness (including Paul’s clear writings on this subject). I believe that God is sovereign and that the Spirit is able to guide me into truth as well. What you have said does not make sense to me, and it does not match what I have personally read in the Bible and know to be true. I did not go to seminary, and I do not hold pastoral teaching up so much importance that God cannot “reach” me if it’s inaccurate.

      I truly appreciate your heart for others to know truth, so I will leave these comments active on this post and allow the Holy Spirit to divide between these words for those who read. God bless you.

  3. Kelly Howard says:

    A local church will tell you how to believe and the majority have it ALL wrong. They tell you we don’t have to keep the 10 commandments because Jesus did for us yet we fight to preserve the right to display the 10 we care nothing about keeping. The Holy Spirit leads us into all truth. We don’t need a church, we are the church!

    • Woah Kelly. I think there is a bigger picture here. YES Christ fulfilled the law. This is clearly stated in scripture and explained repeatedly in many different ways. We are no longer under the law. God looks at the heart. Where the law says do not commit adultery, Jesus says, do not even lust in your heart. Where the law says do not murder, Jesus says do not hate your brother. Jesus obliterated the law, yet made it so much deeper at the same time. God has not changed, but the covenant He keeps with us has. We are not required to keep the Sabbath (Romans 14:4-6, Hebrews 8:13), which was one of the 10 commandments. Churches are not wrong for telling you that you no longer need to follow the law. I think that the depth of this equation is best understood in context of the whole Bible. I didn’t understand until I had read it through several times. Following the 10 commandments will do nothing to save you. Only Christ can.

      We DO need the church. If a “church” is comprised by those following Christ, it is also THE Church. We must not give up meeting together, but must encourage one another as we see the day approaching. There is need to be cautious about the teaching of the church we attend, but I think you are treading dangerous water saying we don’t need the church. This is God’s chosen and holy instrument to accomplish His will, and if He is at work, we need to pay attention to that!

  4. Rachel says:

    Thank you for this edifying message! We can always use a good reminder on how to stay strong in Christ in a world that encourages the opposite!

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