When God calls someone to the life of being a Christian, it is a calling to what is meant to be the most joy-filled and positive experience that any person can EVER know this side of eternity. Our sins are forgiven, our hope is in Christ, and our eternity in heaven is secured. And as a result, as Christians, we ought to be the most positive and happy people in the world!
So why is there so much “negative Christianity” in our world today? When I speak of negative Christianity, I’m referring to many Christians who are simply more negative than they are positive. They are negative in their view of life, their view of all other Christians who differ from them, and often even in their view of the Bible as primarily a rule list of “thou shalt nots”.
I don’t know about you, but as a parent, I don’t want to raise my children to buy into the lie of negative Christianity. It is my desire that they would be joy-filled, spirit-led, gospel-driven world-changers who aren’t afraid to think outside the box, break the mold, and do anything and everything that God calls them to do with their lives.
Think about this…
“Our world 20 years from now will be what we have raised our children to be today.”
Wow. That’s a powerful thought!
And what do we want that world to look like? What do we want our future families and churches to look like? I, for one, want them to be the most positive forces in the world for good.
Here are some differences between positive and negative Christianity that can help us to avoid the one and encourage the other.
1) Positive Christianity has its primary focus on following Christ and being led by His Spirit. Negative Christianity has its primary focus on following a rule list of dos and don’ts in order to be a good Christian.
2) Positive Christianity rejoices with those who do rejoice, and weeps with those who weep because if they are a brother in Christ, they are worth rejoicing over, even if I disagree with them. Negative Christianity rejoices with those who are just like them, and criticizes those who aren’t, even when God is clearly blessing what they are doing.
3) Positive Christianity focuses more on the heart and less on appearance (although both are important). Negative Christianity often focuses more on appearance while neglecting more important matters of the heart.
4) Positive Christianity cares more about making God look good to a watching world. Negative Christianity often cares more about making themselves look good and the world look bad.
5) Positive Christianity strives to be known more for what God is for. Negative Christianity strives to be known more for what God is against.