1 Timothy 6:12 begins, “Fight the good fight of the faith.” Fighting the good fight of faith is probably one of the hardest things we are called to do as Christians. And from what I’ve noticed, a lot of us are kind of doing a terrible job in our battle strategy. There two main camps of Christians (who I truly believe are fighting the good fight in the way they think is best), that I personally feel are kind of jacking up the overall battle plan: the Redcoats and the post-apocalyptic hermits.
We all know Christian Redcoats. Even non-Christians know Christian Redcoats. BECAUSE, these are the people who make it totally clear that they disapprove of 90% of what the world is doing – and Jesus surely would to. They’re posting how they will chain themselves to Hobby Lobby and eat Chick-Fil-A every day for the rest of their Jesus-loving lives.
They are the people who are picking the least significant fights and marching into battle with their bright red coats, playing drums and fifes ala Britain in 1776. And, much like their counterparts 200+ years ago, their getting shot down. They’re not taking time to love the world… or even learn the world… before they take up their war banner. And I know that Jesus says that He and his followers are not of this world – but what if we kept that as a dear reminder in our hearts to get us through hard times, rather than a basis for a smear campaign against other people that… wait for it… GOD LOVES JUST AS MUCH AS YOU.
The Post-Apocalyptic Hermits:
While Redcoats march proudly into battle waving bias news articles and judgment, the post-apocalyptic hermit Christians retreat into the safety of other Christians. Their kids go to private schools or are homeschooled, they listen only to Christian radio, their athletic leagues, social groups, and work affinity memberships are all focused around being with other Christians, in the safety of the Christian environment. They don’t have cable or listen to popular music, and the last movie they went to in theaters was Toy Story 3. To an extent, this is beneficial. God calls us to guard our hearts from impure thoughts, and we should all have fellow Christians to help hold us accountable and support us. BUT, He also calls us to be a light in the world. To tell others about His love and mercy. And the “you guys come over here” mentality is what is killing churches.
How often have people come over to your house without being invited, at least once? Probably rarely. Yet as churches, we buy big buildings, open the doors, and wonder why no one comes in.
So what is the answer?
Honestly, I’m totally unqualified to tell you, because I have both days of being a Redcoat and a Hermit in my attempts to fight the good fight. But a few years ago I read a book called “Guerilla Love.” The “Good Fight” should be fought using primarily guerilla warfare. We should go into the world, not so it can transform us, but so that we can transform it. We SHOULD be different, not because of how opinionated and prideful we are because we’re Team Jesus, but because we want people to feel like they know Jesus when we interact with them. The “there’s something about him/her…” kind of different that makes people feel good, not judged or annoyed. So if you’re a Christian, called to fight the good fight, use means of warfare that will empower and encourage others.