Be authentic. The real you was made for a higher purpose.I Am Awaken
I started this blog because I recognised the need for accessible material on living a Christian lifestyle – not the traditionally edited or one-sided version. To this end, I made a commitment to encourage and remind others that God’s plan is tailored to their authentic self. God says, “Come as you are!” But you won’t stay as you are because God works in true believers.
You have a God-given purpose, but if you do not show up as your true self, then you cannot live an authentic life either. You are truly awakened when the fear of judgment and opinions from others do not hold you hostage. An authentic lifestyle is not just physical, it is holistic. It caters to maintaining spiritual, mental, physical and emotional balance and not the expected status quo of “perfection”. Being authentic means to embrace your imperfections, but this is deeply stigmatised in the religious community.
It’s important for believers, especially newborn believers, to encourage each other to study the Bible (and like-minded books) as a group or with a friend for accountability, and on their own using comparative study methods (see the Building Blocks: Studying the Bible) to avoid being an ignorant or stagnant believer or a confused believer.
Doing your own theological reading and research is a solid way to avoid being misled by out of context Biblical teaching. This is why the Lord’s prayer asks for help with daily bread (such as regular prayer, worship and meditation) because when we make a conscious effort to build our spiritual foundation we also aim to balance and authenticate our lifestyle.
It’s so important that believers and non-believers come away with the truth rather than be discouraged. This is only achieved when we stop cherry-picking sections from the Bible and engage by reading a whole section or chapter (rather than a selective verse) for its full context and essentially the raw truth.
Do I need to be perfect to spread the Gospel?
I felt a growing need to sharpen my confidence in speaking to people, especially non-believers and children, about the lifestyle of Christians. I do not think that it’s right to judge others. My job is only to guide them and be supportive no matter what situation they are in. Unsolicited advice is quite awkward and plain rude. I try to show unconditional love and support because they may be unfamiliar with who God truly is and the plans He has for them.
I started this blog to share my Christian foundation and lifestyle with you. I am in no way perfect. I used drink like a sailor and sometimes I use explicit words when I get too emotional (let’s give grace because it’s less than I used to). Change is a slow process. God prunes us every day by stripping away the things that no longer serve us. I am undeniably thankful that my imperfect qualities do not impact my worth in God’s eyes.
David was a man after God’s own heart, but he was rebellious and did so many selfish things out of envy or greed (like killing Bathsheba’s husband so he can claim her and sleep with her). However, he was an authentic person. He readily admitted his flaws. He knew who he was. He didn’t try to fight like a soldier because he was a shepherd. He won his fight against Goliath because he showed up as himself. He deeply desired to be the best version of himself. He became a loyal servant for God (without perfection).
God uses our imperfections and testimonies to allow others to see His love and grace. No one would be able to relate to a Christian or feel welcome if they were all truly perfect. We need to embrace our imperfections faithfully and intentionally so others can relate and be hopeful that they too can be saved and used by God for a bigger purpose.
Do I need to be qualified to spread the Gospel?
I think of myself as a Legal Scholar (by career) and Bible Scholar (by hobby). No i’m not an ordained Pastor nor am I enrolled in a Seminary. But it isn’t rocket science to read and study the Bible. Going to Seminary is helpful and eye-opening, but if your calling is not to be a Pastor, Theological Teacher, or Christian Counsellor for your church or community then there may not be a need in your life to study to that level.
Any person can study the Bible, and as a believer in God I should be a student of the word of God (Acts 17:11). Now don’t get me wrong. I think it’s wise to take some courses to assist with understanding the Bible. If you are a member, some churches also offer in house training. As a youth leader, I try to take advantage of this because children need proper guidance and less room for confusion, especially when it comes to explaining religion.
Either way, you do not need to have a role or position in the church to have a passion to spread the gospel. Jesus challenged the status quo, which used to be that only the Rabbi or a Priest could act as intercessors, teach the Bible, or spread the Gospel. We all have access to the Bible now so we can teach each other and have a close relationship with God on our own. Thank you, Jesus! God qualifies those who He calls.