Recently I started reading a book that I bought for my niece called be REBELLOUS by Megan Clinton. The main theme of the book is how to fight back against our culture and find true relationships with God and others. It really struck me what a powerful stance this was. Many of the issues it touches on speak to the very center of who we are and how we think about ourselves. It emphasizes that one of the hardest things we face is learning to accept God’s love and learning to live based on that truth.

We who follow Jesus have a great example in Him on how to live a life of love, on how to rebel against the darkness in our world . After all He came as a light, and He reflected His Father’s light to everyone around Him. He didn’t do what was expected of Him, put on a show, deliver Israel from Rome with His military force. He was humble and gentle. He knew His Father’s love and walked in that power. Focusing on Jesus, “who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has set down at the right hand of the throne of God.” Hebrew 12:2 NKJV When we look to Him as our leader in this rebellion we can see that engaging in this battle will be hard. Thank God that we do not have to do it on our own. We have God’s instructions and promises and if we have received Christ (Romans 10:9-10) we have the Holy Spirit living in us to strengthen us and guide us into all truth.

One way we can rebel against our world is to stop the constant critical analysis we do to ourselves and others. Instead of noticing what is wrong, picking out the flaws, and looking for ways we and others fall short, try thinking and looking for what is good.

When God looks at us He sees all the good in us. He knows our great potential and wants to help us develop and grow with His strength and power. He doesn’t keep a record of our mistakes instead He takes great delight in us! “We have the mind of Christ.” 1 Corinthians 2:16 KJV Let’s rebel against a culture that wants us to be harsh, take offense, and keep track of mistakes. Let’s tap into the mind of Christ in us and think on things that are the best in ourselves and others.

Another way we can take a stand against our world is to slow down and listen and look for God. There is constant pressure all around us to do more, be more, hurry, hurry, hurry. I have a sign hanging in my living room that says, “Make time for quiet moments as God whispers and the world is loud.” One of the best things we can do is take time everyday, frequently, to pause in our thoughts, and “Be still, and know that I am God.” Psalm 46:10a. The more we meditate on God and His word, the more we can grow in knowing His great love for us and we can understand all that we have available to us as His beloved children. “I ask- ask the God of our Master, Jesus Christ, the God of glory- to make you intelligent and discerning in knowing Him personally, your eyes focused and clear, so that you can see exactly what it is He is calling you to do, grasp the immensity of this glorious way of life He has for His followers, Oh, the utter extravagance of His work in us who trust Him- endless energy, boundless strength.” Ephesians 1:17-19 The Message.

A last way I want to challenge you today to be counter cultural and fight for what is best is to let go of all your worries and fears. Our world, and especially our media thrives on fear and shock. We are constantly barraged in the news with everything that is going wrong in our country and our world. Our lives are filled with struggles and things that are going, or could go wrong. As we take all of our concerns to the Lord, He hears our prayers. Recently I heard a song by Bethel music called “Slaves No More”. The lyrics are “I’m no longer a slave to fear. I am a child of God.” When we recognize whose children we are, and how powerful our Father is, we can “cast our cares on Him” 1 Peter 5:7a NKJV and rest in His perfect love and tender care.

Thank you for the opportunity to share. May God bless and strengthen all of us, making us warriors for Christ in this rebellion against a dark and lost world.

“Be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9b NLT

Betsy O’Callaghan