“Four Letter Christianity”

Posted: December 9, 2013 in "Around the Table" Discussion Topic/Marketplace Devo, Servant Warrior Radio Message

We’ve all seen them…and used them…acronyms. And in our social media world, they are becoming more and more prominent with many being used in everyday language. The military has been using acronyms forever in reference to weapons and to remember various aspects of training, battle strategies, preparation, tactics, etc… Now that social media has taken over as our primary means of communication, it seems we have become very clever and effective in saying all that we need or would like to say in only 142 characters. LOL (Laugh Out Loud), BTW (By The Way), BFF (Best Friends Forever), etc… and yes, all the others as well. Remember, this is a family friendly devo.  There’s the BCS, SEC, ACC, MLB, NFL, NBA, the list goes on and on.

And you know, the Christian community was not going to be outdone. It seems we in the Christian community have a new vernacular and essentially have tried to reduce eternal salvation, the incredible life changing message and love of Jesus , and a relationship with God…the Creator of the heavens and the earth… the Alpha and the Omega…the Beginning and the End…the Great I am…the omnipotent, omnipresent, and eternal King of kings and Lord of lords into some catch phrase Christianity. And when the catch phrases get further reduced… acronymed as I call it (Is that even a word? If not, we just created a new one.), what is left is what I call Four Letter Christianity.  I mean, we have WWJD (What Would Jesus Do), TGIF (Thank God I’m Forgiven)…yes, I’m glad it’s Friday as well, BAHF (Blessed And Highly Favored), PBTM (Please Bless This Mess), JDFM (Jesus Died For Me), and so on. And if we’re determined to continue to reduce Christ’s love, sacrifice, salvation, and relationship to only four letters, may I introduce one that should take its rightful spot at the top of the list along with JDFM? That would be: WJIT – Without Jesus I’m Toast…which is true both figuratively and literally.

In no way am I making light of anything…even though it may sound as though I am. People today use acronyms like WTH, WTF, LMAO. Yes. You read it correctly. I just included those in a devotional. We all know what they mean. At least most who use the social media platforms do. But for some reason, we think if we only use the letters that it makes the phrases…perhaps…more acceptable. Of course, we still want the phrases to have the same punch. I mean, why else would we say them. But using the letters seems to allow a wider audience through a larger number of mediums and communication vehicles to experience them. In the end, the intent is the same. I hope that is what happens when we jump into the world of Four Letter Christianity…the intent part, I mean. I hope that we’re not using the letters because we’re afraid to actually come out and say “Jesus Died For Me”. Or ask, “What Would Jesus Do?” Or proclaim that “Without Jesus I’m Toast!”. I hope that only space and/or character restrictions and not fear prompt the arsenal of FLSS’s (Four Letter Sermon Supplements).

Challenge:   In today’s politically correct, “try to be cool yet not offend”, sound bite, and 140 character communication culture, it seems as though we, the Christian community, feel the need to shorten everything in order to fit into the restrictive guidelines of a particular communication vehicle…or to shoot out a short catch-phrase “Jesus” response…or to fit a t-shirt design. And while our culture may want to microwave the message rather than to slow cook it, the awesomeness of Jesus Christ…His sacrifice…the gift of salvation…His love for us…His promises…the fact that He is the Way, the Truth, the Life, and the ONLY way to the Father…can never be reduced or diminished. And even though folks may actually know what WWJD stands for…isn’t it better to make sure? Especially when you throw the “WJIT” acro at them. Let’s make sure our message, or our Jesus message, is NEVER diminished or diluted.

Prayer: Lord, it is so humbling and amazing that You, the Creator of the heavens and the earth, want to spend time with me and be a part of every detail in my life. Your word tells me that I am to be in the world, not of it. Please help me rise above today’s fast paced, sound bite,  microwave culture and never diminish Your words…Your sacrifice…Your gift…Your love…You. I know I can’t do it in my strength. But You tell me that Your grace is sufficient…that You will never leave me…that if I call Your name You will be there… that You stand at the door knocking and all I have to do is open it…and Your word tells me that I can do all things through You who strengthen me. I believe them. And I believe YOU. Thank You for loving me.  In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.        

Jeff is the founder and lead servant of Servant Warrior® Ministries, a Real…Radical…Relentless…Relevant movement to reach guys, 5 to 105, where they are, and share with them the love and life changing Message of Jesus Christ, and inspire and empower them to be who God has created and called them to be.

Meet people where they are…Love’em like Jesus would…Rock the rafters…Change the world…

www.ServantWarriorMinistries.org

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