I climbed into my time machine the other day and dialed it back to 1988. A song has been playing over and over inside my head for the last week, which prompted me to pen this post.
The song is titled Casual Christian, and it was released by a group called DeGarmo and Key. Now, some of you have no idea who I’m talking about. Eddie DeGarmo and Dana Key were huge back in the day when contemporary Christian music was going mainstream. Along with other artists like White Heart, Russ Taff, and Carman. (Now you truly know how old I am)
I just want to focus on the chorus of this song. It goes like this:
I don’t wanna be, I don’t wanna be a casual Christian
I don’t wanna live, I don’t wanna live a lukewarm life
Because I wanna light up the night
With an everlasting light
I don’t wanna live the casual Christian life
Here are some characteristics I think of when I hear the term casual Christian.
Someone who goes to church on Sunday, but doesn’t do anything else during the week.
Someone who reads their Bible just enough to fulfill a quota.
Someone who volunteers for outreach just to check off the box on a to-do list.
The list could go on and on, but these are big ones.
Revelation 3:16 is a very sobering verse in Scripture. God tells us what He thinks of lukewarm.
So then, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will vomit you out of My mouth.
I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to ever be vomited out of God’s mouth. Have you ever grabbed a glass of water, thinking it was cold, and when you took a huge gulp, you realized it was lukewarm? Not pleasant. Not pleasant at all.
The Gospel is so much more than attending church on Sunday, reading the Bible in a year, or going on a mission trip. It’s about dying to self, renewing the mind, and following Christ.
It’s a complete transformation of life. It’s not a prayer to recite, and then go right back to the same way of living.
One thing I used to do is try and follow a bunch of reading plans for the Bible. I’m not saying there is anything wrong with those, I’m just saying don’t limit yourself to them. Don’t make your reading time robotic or so rigid that you feel guilty if you don’t read the required amount in a day. I know a guy who spent his entire first year of being a Christian reading nothing but Ephesians 1.
So, I don’t use them anymore. I open the Bible and just say yes to the Holy Spirit.
Let’s stop being casual Christians, and start living for Christ by dying to everything we are. It’s no longer about us.
It’s about Him.