Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Write something in the YOUNG ADULT or TEEN genre (06/07/07)
TITLE: God's way, or your way?
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The challenge of living as a Christian in today’s world.
One of the questions we face in our Christian walk, is trying to work out what place being a Christian has in our lives. It isn’t easy.
Let’s face it. Growing up today can be tough. Young people today face similar issues to those who were growing up during the late nineteen eighties and early nineties.
The world today is full of pressures and uncertainty, just as it was when I was in my teens and early twenties.
If you are one of the many young people entering university for the first time, or in the final years of schooling, study can cause a lot of worry.
So much seems to depend on your marks, be it getting a job, or a place in the course that you want to do when you finish school. Juggling priorities can be hard, and in a lot cases, many of us find that our Christian life takes a back seat as we try to fit everything in.
Or, if you’re younger, and still in school, you may be used to being teased by friends and classmates for being a Christian and believing in God.
There can be many situations where you might be tempted to compromise your beliefs for the sake of popularity, or looking good in front of friends. It might even be that when with non Christian friends, you do not talk about going to church, or ‘act like a Christian’ in case you get a hard time about it.
There is no doubt that these influences make living a Christian life tough for young people.
At a glance, life today seems to be so far removed from God.
It really does make one wonder, if being a Christian makes any difference. Or, you might just think, “Well, I suppose going to church every week is important, but I don’t really see how it relates to anything else that I do when I’m not actually there.”
However, as Christians, one of the most important steps that we can take, is to remember what living the way that God wants us to, is all about. The Bible is full of guidance on this question.
In Romans 12:2, Paul writes;
‘Do not conform yourselves to the standard of this world, but let God transform you inwardly by a complete change of your mind....’
This means that we should aim to live based on what God wants, rather than peer pressure, our own pride, or what we consider to be most important to ourselves. To put it simply, think of Christians as being God’s ambassadors to humanity.
If we as Christians represent God to the world, then we should be prepared to stand up for our faith, even in times when it might make us look bad. Often, you many find that people respect individuality more than someone who just goes along with the crowd.
Of course, things such as homework still need to be done. When I was in my last years of school, I had only been a Christian for a few years, I did not know much about how to pray, or what was in the Bible beyond the basic understanding I had from my Sunday school years.
I found it helpful to put on some of my favourite Christian music, and read Bible passages related to a particular song. This helped me a lot to develop the habit of a daily quiet time.
I later learnt other disciplines such as prayer and journalling, and have benefited from some Christian friends my own age to encourage me.
I remember how what I first did for a quiet time, gave me a sense that I was in touch with what God wanted for me, and how I measured up to his standards.
In reflection, I can see how this time I spent with God made a difference to my other commitments, helping me to stay motivated. The time I spent did not interfere with the homework that I had to do, either.
In fact, it is only by putting God first, and living as Christians every moment , every day of our lives, that we can really hope to make any difference to our world.
The opinions expressed by authors may not necessarily reflect the opinion of FaithWriters.com.
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