There are times that I wish God had not made me such a vocal, passionate soul. I only wish it for a second… and then I get passionate about something else and forget my frustration. But life would be much simpler if I didn’t care so deeply. Caring gets me and usually my mouth into trouble.
The verses I claimed for my ministry are found in Ephesians 6:19-20.
And for me, that utterance may be given unto me, that I may open my mouth boldly, to make known the mystery of the gospel, For which I am an ambassador in bonds: that therein I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak.
Well, there it is. How do you claim a verse like that and not live by it? If you’re the Jesus Chick, you can’t; or at least you shouldn’t. So when I get into tight places, meaning where others disagree, I try my very hardest to stay on task and biblical. I am very aware that my passion can also cause my flesh to take control. So when given a moment of passion to defend God’s stance, I have to reflect back and ask myself, was I defending God? Or Shari?
On the subject of “Fake Faith.”
That was the subject. And it took about thirty seconds to get my knickers in a knot! I am a defender of faith not of a denomination. Let me preface this blog by saying “I am a happy Baptist!” But I’m not just a minister to the Baptist, so when I hear words of discouragement about anyone’s faith or denomination it breaks my heart. I loved it when my Pastor has said in his sermons on several occasions that we need to take a stand on what we agree on, not argue with what we don’t, in regards to denominationalism. Let me also say that those are Christ, born of a virgin, dying on the cross, raised the third day, the way, the truth the life, churches. But on the subject of worship style, you can almost get a knock down drag out argument started with anyone of faith who is also passionate about what they believe. But on the subject of “fake faith,” I personally don’t think it should ever be a part of a conversation. And yet there it was… and there I was… and by the time all was said and done, I just didn’t say anything because I knew I wouldn’t change minds and I wasn’t so sure it wasn’t going to a place that children of God ought not go. Anger.
But my knickers were still, and are still in a knot. So today I’ve decided to do what I often do and that’s talk to God and write it out. So here’s the questions in my mind: “What is fake faith and what does the Bible say about it?”
Me Focused Faith
That’s almost a cult in itself! And it’s not discriminatory of denomination. It’s the idea that your church was founded for you. You are the final authority on all things God, and if things change you should be notified in writing with a letter from God. Now I know that’s extreme and no one would confess to that being so, but they’d like it if it were possible. And I’ve met them.
Church Focused Faith
It’s akin to “Me Focused Faith,” in that people believe their denomination is exclusive to salvation. There’s just one major problem with that… the Bible is our final authority and there’s no denomination mentioned. Yes there’s doctrine, but not denomination.
It’s really not faith at all, but it’s under the guise of faith. It’s the appearance of strong faith when all is well and everyone and everything is in its place. But let trouble come into your life, or things change in the church and it’s time to move on, out of church or in search of another church that has all the answers.
Fool Proof Faith
That’s not faith either. It’s the notion that you have God figured out and there is no wiggle room. The structure of faith is having all the “I’s” dotted and “T’s” crossed. Theology is where it’s at and the notion of worship comes from the book, not the heart.
Those are what I define as “fake faith.”
What I don’t define fake faith as:
- Someone who worships differently than I do.
- Someone who uses another version of the bible. (although I am a King James Version gal, and have reasoning and belief that it is the protected Word of God)
- Someone who goes to another church.
- Someone who tries to prove their faith too hard. (meaning that perhaps they get a little zealous about a certain person or thing in the church) It’s sometimes hard to separate our love for God’s people with our love for God.
- Someone who gets in the flesh. (else I’d be lost)
Even the Apostle John was concerned that folks weren’t like him when he expressed those concerns in Luke 9:49
And John answered and said, Master, we saw one casting out devils in thy name; and we forbad him, because he followeth not with us.
But Jesus answered him in verse 50:
And Jesus said unto him, Forbid him not: for he that is not against us is for us.
Someone who worships differently isn’t being fake, it’s being who they believe God called them to be.
I sometimes think that God made me a little weird. It’s usually when someone who’s not like me questions why I am like I am. Be very careful on questioning another’s faith or actions of faith, lest you discourage a child of God and He’s not happy.