It’s hard to hear these words from a friend, but I want to listen.
“Suzie, I just can’t call myself Christian anymore. I look around and what I see isn’t what I signed up for.”
I listen as she spills what led her to this place. One person says this and another says that on social media, in person, in her extended family. Fingers are pointed. Heated words and debates. It’s loud and chaotic.
Is this faith? Is this Christianity? I don’t even know what I believe anymore.
If, like my friend, you’ve been asking these same questions, you aren’t alone. I want you to hear that. But can I tell you something, the same thing I shared with my beautiful friend?
I don’t mean that to silence you. In fact, I long to hear you. I’ve had the same struggle, lots of us have. But that struggle led me to sort through what was humanity and what was Jesus. As I leaned into my relationship with Jesus, I rediscovered why I loved him in the first place.
His words stand.
His example of love and community and sacrifice and servant-hearted actions stand.
That moment when we first encountered him, it stands.
Those times we felt his presence, those weren’t fake. They were real and they changed us. That stands too.
The fact that Jesus heard the cries of a blind man and leaned in to touch the lepers rather than turn away, that stands. The moment he climbed on a cross with the world on his heart, that stands.
It is noisy. It is true that some are reflecting faith in all the wrong ways (regardless of which side of the fence they are on). It’s true that some have mishandled the Gospel, and mishandled people too. That’s not okay. It’s never okay.
But it’s not Jesus. . . and it’s important that we make that distinction.
When we have those questions, they are valid. Don’t push them down. Talk to Jesus about them. Don’t hold back. Let it all spill, like my friend did. With a godly friend whose life reflects Jesus. With a godly counselor. With Jesus, always with Jesus. There’s healing in all of these things.
I wish I could fix the world. I wish we all remembered the power of unity. I wish we’d talk about the hard stuff, but with a heart to resolve, eyes to see the person standing in front of us, and how God uses all of us so completely even as we wrestle through what we believe, or don’t.
But the only person I can really change is me.
I can remember who Jesus is. I can remember what happens as we shut it all down for a bit and get alone with him, and how much I really need that. I can remember that my heart desperately needs more of Jesus than social media or the news.
I can be passionate about those things like justice and be strong in those, but also see the people, really see them before I try to put them in one column or another. I can apologize when I fall short. I can understand how fallible we all are, how much we need Jesus, and then show a world what that looks like.
Jesus stands. . .
I’ve got those words ringing in my heart. I’m reaching for them. I’m stepping into them. I want to live them in such a way that others want that too.
Honestly, that was my friend’s heartbeat too. She just got blindsided by all the noise and had valid questions that she needed to unpack.
If you are discouraged, don’t walk away, sis. Run toward him . . . because Jesus stands and always will.
I’ll be running with you,
You may think you are the only one struggling with this or something else, but I want you to know that you are not alone. If you are struggling, just wave your hand in the comments and I’ll pray with you. I love hearing from you.
- One resource to help rediscover Jesus is Come With Me: Discovering the Beauty of Following Where He Leads. You can download a chapter here absolutely free. I hope it encourages you like crazy.
Yes! Jesus stands! Thank you for such a timely message today. He is so faithful. He is without flaw. None of the mess of this life is His fault, yet He stands as our Peace through every moment. May God be praised.
Thank You please pray for me.
Oh Suze!!! I have felt this in my soul for a couple of years now!! Thank you for addressing it!! I have dear friends and family with differing opinions. And if I can be honest, some of their posts on social media feel like attacks from people I love!! I don’t engage, because my relationship with them is more important to me than my opinion.
Again… Thank You!!
Father, I pray for peace for Sandra. Speak joy over the wounds of her heart. Refocus her eyes to the promises you have poured over her heart, over your mission, and over this day. Thank you for her courage. Thank you for her desire to love you and love others. In Jesus’ name.
Very timely message. Longtime struggle in an area where I have to keep this all in mind. Jesus stands. His Word is the authority. The Gospel is always such good news. Never gets old. Thank you, Susie!
Running with Jesus
Running with you!
Suzie, Thank you for your message today. With all that is going on around us and the world right now it can be hard at times to remember that Jesus is with us in the turmoil. When we put our focus back on him and how he sacrificed his life for ours we can find peace.
These are refreshing words today Suzie, thank you.
I have been discouraged last few days from some words a person who is a sister in Christ had spoke to me last week. I have forgiven this dear sister in the Lord, but I realize I have allowed the enemy to get my eyes on those words spoken and off of the words that are written for me in my Bible.
I am grateful to God when His truth is so timely. And the words He gave you to speak today were just what I needed to refocus on the One who Stands.
So, Thank you for your great love for the Lord Suzie that you share with us all in and through your ministry.
You blessed me today with this post (email).
God Bless you!
Love your sister in Christ in Canada.
Thank you, Denise. It means so much that you shared this with me (and with others). <3
Jesus also literally stands. In Acts 7:55 we read about a man named Stephen, Jesus’ disciple who was in grave danger, about to be harmed. He looked up and saw Jesus standing at the right hand of God.
We see people stand who are fans or family of an injured sportsman because they are concerned about the player’s welfare. And we are familiar with how an attorney will promptly stand in objection when the opposition says something damaging or untrue about his defendant.
Isn’t it comforting to know that Jesus stands for the same reasons when one of His is in danger of any kind? He is our advocate just like an attorney speaks on behalf of his client.
Oh Lisa, I love this so much!
Suzie, I’ve enjoyed your posts for several years now. I’m glad that you enjoyed the comment that I shared with you and the others. Thank you for the encouragement that you give to others.
Thank you for this! I am doing a presentation on the Lament of the Theology Silencing Others tonight. I needed this reminder.
Beautiful! Thank you!
SO well said Suzuie !
I have been thinking and feeling these very things for a couple of years now…… But God keeps reminding me that He never changes, no matter what is going on, or what is popular or PC (or not)
I have had to step away and take a pause from some groups I was involved in, some friendships and boy! Is it ever lonely out here !
When did politics take over our faith and love for Jesus?
Please pray for me in my lonely place. Thanks
I got this in my email a few days ago but just read it today. What a timely message. I got a text from my daughter that has left me really struggling. This, this is exactly what I needed to read today. Please pray for my daughter, that she will find her way to Jesus. Thank you.🙏💜